Telecom Stocks Limit Tech Losses

Excitement over deals in the telecom sector helped limit tech stock losses on Wednesday.

Level 3 (NASDAQ: LVLT) and Atlantic Tele-Network (NASDAQ: ATNI) were the day’s big winners.

Level 3 surged 18.6% on reports that the company is discussing a joint venture with Sprint (NYSE: S). Atlantic fared even better, soaring 42.6% after the company acquired wireless assets from Verizon Wireless.

Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) and Dell (NASDAQ: DELL) also bucked the downtrend, rising 2% each. Microsoft gained on reports that it will soon unveil free antivirus software, while Dell rose on a $1 billion note sale and reports of improving PC sales.

AMD (NYSE: AMD) tacked on 1.5% on news of market share gains against Intel (NASDAQ: INTC).

Satyam (NYSE: SAY) shares soared 35.7% on a JP Morgan upgrade and news that the company remains profitable even after an accounting scandal.

eFuture (NASDAQ: EFUT) lost 24% on its results.

The broader market slumped on worries about higher interest rates following another weak Treasury auction, but the Federal Reserve’s Beige Book report showed some economic improvement, helping to limit losses.

The Nasdaq lost 7 to 1853, the S&P 500 slipped 3 to 939, and the Dow shed 24 to 8739. Volume rose to 5.37 billion shares on the NYSE, and 2.38 billion on the Nasdaq. Decliners led by a 19-16 margin on the NYSE, and 16-10 on the Nasdaq. Downside volume was 58% on the NYSE, and 55% on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 17-38 on the NYSE, and 51-17 on the Nasdaq.

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