Stocks Climb As War Nears

Blue chip stocks rose Wednesday as U.S. warplanes began bombing Iraqi missile sites near the Kuwait border, but tech stocks were restrained on disappointing results from Oracle.

The Nasdaq slipped 3 to 1397, the S&P 500 gained 7 to 874, and the Dow rose 71 to 8265. Volume declined to 1.42 billion shares on the NYSE, but rose to 1.71 billion on the Nasdaq. Advancers led 17-14 on the NYSE, and 16-15 on the Nasdaq. Upside volume was 64% on the NYSE, but only 44% on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 37-30 on the NYSE, and 64-40 on the Nasdaq.

After the close, 3Com missed loss estimates but beat revenue estimates, and Jabil matched estimates.

During the day, Expedia rocketed 21% on news that USA Interactive will acquire the rest of the company.

Oracle fell 7.7% after coming in light on license revenues and offering a wide range of guidance. Microchip lost 9.4% on a warning.

priceline soared 31% on a deal with Travelweb.

Symantec fell 6% on a downgrade.

Sprint got a new CEO at last.

Cisco rose 0.1% on an IP telephony acquisition.

Motorola fell 5% after switching operating systems.

Microsoft edged up 1.1% despite a serious Windows flaw.

RedHat edged up 0.3% on a partnership with HP , which climbed 1.3%.

Xerox was unchanged after unveiling a new print compression technology.

AT&T slipped 1.3% despite winning a deal with Air China.

Ted Turner, meanwhile, said he’d rather go back to one of his ex-wives than go through the AOL-Time Warner merger again. AOL stock slipped 0.7%.

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