Stocks Rise On Another Merger Monday

Stocks rose on another merger Monday, led by a proposed merger between Vivendi and USA Networks.

The ISDEX rose 3 to 181, and the Nasdaq surged 34 to 1987. The S&P 500 rose 11 to 1134, and the Dow climbed 80 to 9891. Volume declined to 1.23 billion shares on the NYSE, and 1.82 billion on the Nasdaq. Advancers led 17 to 13 on the NYSE, and 20 to 15 on the Nasdaq.

After the close. Priceline surged on a marketing deal with AOL , eBay announced the resignation of COO Brian Swette, and Solectron said it will make a “material announcement” tomorrow morning.

The big story during the day was the departure of a slew of former technology and Internet leaders from the big-cap Nasdaq 100, which will have a decidedly greater biotech weighting as of next Monday. Symantec , Synopsis , CDW Computer Centers and Integrated Device Technology are the only tech stocks being added to the Nasdaq 100; the other nine additions are biotech or medical stocks. Thirteen former high-flyers will be dropped from the index, among them Ariba , Inktomi and RealNetworks .

Take-Two said it would have to restate previous earnings – but soared on a positive first-quarter preannouncement.

Comverse gained 6% on a deal with Verizon .

Nuance fell on the departure of its CFO.

Some technical comments on the market: Note: To see the charts in the text email newsletter, click on the story link at the top of the newsletter.

The Nasdaq (first chart) remains above its lower uptrend line off the September lows. That trendline, at just under 1960 for tomorrow, is critical support for the market. 1980 is first support for tomorrow, and 1995-2005 is first resistance. The S&P 500 (second chart) should have support at 1125-1132 for tomorrow (1132 is preferred), and resistance at 1137-1140. The Dow (third chart) faces resistance at 9930 and 10,000, and should find support tomorrow around 9775-9800. This is an options expiration week, which tends to have a modest down bias, and can also produce some volatility. However, we are also entering a period of seasonal strength, particularly next week.

Special report: For a free introduction to technical chart patterns and an overview of last year’s action in the stock market, visit,1785,2571_500051,00.html.

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