Stocks Surge On Cisco Upgrade

Stocks surged Monday after an influential analyst upgraded shares of Cisco Systems .

Tim Luke of Lehman Brothers said early indications are that Cisco has maintained April’s strong pace into May. Luke raised his rating to Overweight from Equal Weight and set an $18 price target. Cisco gained 4.5% to 16.67.

The Nasdaq surged 21 to 1541, the S&P 500 gained 11 to 945, and the Dow rose 122 to 8726. Volume rose to 1.36 billion shares on the NYSE, and 1.78 billion on the Nasdaq. Advancers led 23-9 on the NYSE, and 20-11 on the Nasdaq. Upside volume was 84% on the NYSE, and 83% on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 290-4 on the NYSE, and 206-6 on the Nasdaq.

After the close, Avanex soared on news that it plans to acquire optical component assets from Corning and Alcatel . eSpeed and CNT came in light on revenues.

During the day, the IPO of iPayment priced at 16, opened at 19.30, and closed at 21.02. The first Internet IPO of the year was dogged by an analyst controversy.

Applied Materials rose 4.2% ahead of tomorrow night’s earnings report, and Dell hit a new 52-week high ahead of its report on Thursday. added 0.7% on changes at the top.

SBC rose 4% on news that it will be able to charge competitors higher wholesales prices in Illinois.

Intel gained 2% despite an Itanium 2 flaw.

Mercury Interactive gained 5% on an acquisition.

And two studies looked at the ongoing IT spending slump.

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