RealTime IT News

Tech Stocks Surge on Hopes for Recovery

News that the recession deepened in the first quarter took a back seat Wednesday to hopes that the economy may soon begin to improve.

Comcast (NASDAQ: CMCSA), Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO), Dell (NASDAQ: DELL), HP (NYSE: HPQ) and Adobe (NASDAQ: ADBE) were among the leaders as the Nasdaq notched its highest close since early November and the S&P hit its highest level since early January.

Comcast will report its quarterly results Thursday morning, while Cisco, Dell and HP will report their quarterly earnings in May.

The Commerce Department reported that the economy shrank by more than 6% for a second straight quarter, making the current downturn the worst since 1957-1958, but lower inventories and Federal Reserve comments that the worst may be over sent stocks surging. A rebound in consumer spending was a bright spot in the first quarter, with the bulk of the decline coming in inventories and equipment, software and construction spending.

SAP (NYSE: SAP) fell 4.7% on its results, and Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) was another weak spot, off 3.2%.

E*Trade (NASDAQ: ETFC) plunged 34% on capital concerns, while Savvis (NASDAQ: SVVS) soared 29% after posting a surprise profit.

Research in Motion (NASDAQ: RIMM) slipped on news of insider selling and the possibility of competition from Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT).

After the close, JDS Uniphase (NASDAQ: JDSU) fell on its results, while Citrix (NASDAQ: CTXS) and Akamai (NASDAQ: AKAM) gained on their reports.

The Nasdaq rose 38 to 1711, the S&P 500 gained 18 to 873, and the Dow rose 168 to 8185. Volume rose to 9.04 billion shares on the NYSE, and 2.82 billion on the Nasdaq. Advancers led by a 31-6 margin on the NYSE, and 21-6 on the Nasdaq. Upside volume was 88% on the NYSE, and 80% on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 24-71 on the NYSE, and 31-22 on the Nasdaq.