Doing their best to ignore a bloodbath in the
, technology stocks ended mixed as the week concluded.
finished up 14.74, or 0.4%, at 3860.48, likely seeing some flight to quality after the Dow fell more than 260 points, as bank stocks tumbled after an earnings warning from
TheStreet.com Internet Sector
index closed up 0.45 at 896.52.
Triple witching, the quarterly expiration of stock options, index options and index futures, may have played a role in the subdued trade, though the sector's performance was typical to what has been seen much of the week.
Most excitement in tech land was generated by wholesale broadband services provider
, which agreed to purchase
for around $202 million in stock based on its closing price from yesterday. That figure dropped sharply today after Covad closed down 6 13/16, or 27%, at 18 7/16.
downgraded Covad's intermediate-term rating to accumulate from buy following the announcement, pointing out that it would be "tough to make the expenses and add-on costs work in the near term."
The downgrade also was in part due to indications from the company that its line adds for the quarter may be light, and that was a "group issue for the wholesale carriers," and led them to also downgrade
to accumulate from buy. NorthPoint ended down 2 1/8, or 15%, at 12 1/8.
Other broadband wholesalers fell as well.
finished down 3 1/8, or 17%, at 15 3/8, and
dropped 3/4, or 7.5%, at 9 1/4. And for some reason,
Copper Mountain Networks
tagged along for the ride, closing down 10 1/2, or 11%, at 82 1/2, though there was no indication that it had anything to do with the above business.
Merrill's Henry Blodget may have played a role in
loss today. It finished down 2 15/16, or 4.6%, at 61 1/8. In a pre-earnings preview, Blodget wrote that he expected another "solid quarter" from eBay, but he was not looking for much upside on either the top or bottom line, which he claimed "may come as a surprise to some investors, as eBay has often beaten expectations easily."