Nortel Raises Telecom Hopes

Nortel provided fresh evidence of a telecom spending rebound after the close on Thursday.

Nortel’s stock jumped more than 15% after hours after the company blew out earnings and revenue estimates. Earnings of 9 cents a share crushed 2-cent estimates, and revenues of $2.83 billion beat $2.44 billion estimates.

Nortel called 2003 “a turning point” for the company, and with numbers like that, it’s hardly an overstatement.

Another plus for the sector: a report today predicted explosive growth in the broadband sector.

It won’t be long before investors get another report on the health of the telecom equipment and networking sector. Cisco reports after the close on Tuesday.

Stocks were mixed during the day, as investors continued to digest the Federal Reserve’s hint that interest rates won’t stay low forever.

The Nasdaq lost 9 to 2068, the S&P 500 rose 5 to 1134, and the Dow gained 41 to 10,510. Volume rose to 1.92 billion shares on the NYSE, and 2.64 billion on the Nasdaq. Decliners led 20-11 on the NYSE, and 20-12 on the Nasdaq. Downside volume was 57% on the NYSE, and 70% on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 117-3 on the NYSE, and 99-11 on the Nasdaq.

Also after the close, Gateway met estimates. VeriSign , Advent , Digital Insight , Avid , Varian , and Microstrategy beat estimates. Adobe raised guidance, and RealNetworks warned.

During the day, DoubleClick surged 15% after beating estimates.

Activision and Overstock rose on their results, but the majority of stocks reporting earnings fell.

Ariba , Veritas , JDS Uniphase , Foundry , Digital River , Internet Security , Extreme and AskJeeves all fell on their earnings reports.

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