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Small-cap stocks spiked along with major indices to an early-morning high on Wednesday, then settled down closer to the baseline in midday trading. The Russell 2000 Index was up 1.2% to 775.08, and the S&P SmallCap 600 was up 0.8% to 401.56.

Nextest Systems

(NEXT) - Get NextDecade Corp. Report

, a San Jose, Calif., maker of flash-memory testing equipment, announced that


(TER) - Get Teradyne, Inc. Report

will buy the company for about $20 a share, or $325 million net of cash acquired. Teradyne, based in North Reading, Mass., will use this acquisition to expand its automatic test equipment business into flash drives. The deal is expected to close in the first quarter of 2008Shares of Nextest skyrocketed 63% to $19.60, while Teradyne shares were down 1% at $10.87.

Another big gainer in the semis sector,


(EMKR) - Get EMCORE Corporation Report

, saw shares rise 18% to $11.10 after the Albuquerque, N.M., company announced it landed a deal to supply 60 megawatts of terrestrial solar power systems to Ontario, Canada, over the next three years. Terms weren't disclosed.

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Meanwhile, shares of

Maguire Properties


lifted 11% to $28.06 on news that the real estate investment trust is seeking a buyer. The Los Angeles-based REIT announced it has formed a committee of independent directors to explore strategic alternatives for achieving shareholder value, including a sale of the company.

Far less secure was

Force Protection

(FRPT) - Get Freshpet Inc Report

, shares of which slipped 20% to $5.44 as analysts at Sanford Research initiated coverage of the Lasdon, S.C., company with a sell rating. Force Protection, which makes ballistic- and blast-protected vehicles, also was facing speculation that a share-saving

buyout may no longer be in the works.

Network Equipment Technologies

( NWK) also fell after the Fremont, Calif.-based maker of communications equipment announced late Tuesday that it would sell $85 million in convertible senior notes. Terms have yet to be determined. Shares took an 18% slide to $10.71.