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Tech Investors Go Shopping

With President Bush preparing for a second term, reassured investors boosted the Nasdaq 1.2% in recent trading.

The Nasdaq Composite gained 23 points to 2008. Among the gainers were Yahoo! (YHOO), up 1.5% to $38.30; Cisco (CSCO), up 1% to $19.48; and Dell (DELL), up 1.7% to $36.22. Intel (INTC) showed a smaller rise, adding 0.7% to $22.73.

The rise in tech closely mirrored an upward move in the S&P 500, which climbed 1.4% to 1146.

In tech as well as the broader market, the story was similar: Investors seemed relieved to have avoided the uncertainty that blemished the 2000 election, said Gabriel Erdi, an analyst for Skye Investment Advisors. "I think that's a big thing that was basically removed in investors' eyes. It was somewhat of a worry with how close the polls were."

As an added benefit, Republicans snagged additional seats in the House and Senate, lending them political momentum in both houses of Congress as well as the White House. Although conventional wisdom holds that the market prefers a divided government, because gridlock tends to mean few new laws are passed, Erdi said he believes that may no longer be the case. "With terrorism a worry , I think it's very important that whatever administration is in office be able to pass the laws that need to be passed," he said.

Others agreed that the gains in tech reflected the same broader sentiments helping the stock market in Wednesday trading.

"If you look at the two administrations, not that either is particularly anti-business, the market's conclusion is that the Bush administration is probably slightly more pro-business than Kerry," said Ozan Akcin, chief investment strategist for Puglisi & Co. He said that likely reflects Bush's push for reductions in capital gains and dividend taxes during his prior stint in office.

Though gains in tech were broad-based, most names were up relatively modestly. Analysts said that reflected ongoing fundamental concerns about the business outlook for technology companies heading into 2005.

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