RIM, Apple Boost Techs

Tech stocks rallied to a new multi-year high Thursday on strength in Research in Motion and Apple , while the broader market stalled ahead of Friday’s monthly jobs report.

The Nasdaq closed above 2650 for the first time since February 2001. RIM and Apple gained 4% each, as traders continued to pick them as the winners in the wireless device race. Apple continued to gain on its iPhone launch, even if initial sales reports failed to hit the most optimistic expectations, while RIM continued to climb on last week’s blowout results and reports that the company could enter the market in China.

But the Dow and S&P went nowhere ahead of Friday’s Labor Department report, which is expected to show a June gain of 125,000 jobs. Rising bond yields and a GM downgrade also weighed on blue chips.

Entrust and Orbcomm fell on their growth outlooks.

In late trading, Microsoft shares slipped on news of a $1 billion Xbox warranty charge against earnings.

The Nasdaq climbed 11 to 2656, the S&P 500 added half a point to 1525, and the Dow slipped 11 to 13,565. Volume rose to 2.62 billion shares on the NYSE, and declined from Tuesday’s levels to 1.71 billion on the Nasdaq. Declining issues led by a 17-14 margin on the NYSE, and 15-14 on the Nasdaq. Upside volume was 49% on the NYSE, and 64% on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 228-60 on the NYSE, and 195-79 on the Nasdaq.

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