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LONDON -- It may be raining outside, but stocks in London were basking in some much-needed sunshine on Tuesday. The FTSE 100 gained 79.4 points, or 1.3%, to 6,074.0, and the Techmark index climbed 80.5 points, or 2.4%, to 3,471.1.

Much of these gains came on the back of a spirited performance by U.S. markets, and many investors appear to trust this market about as far as they can throw it. Exactly how far the U.K. markets have to run before hitting the first hurdle remains a question that nobody seems to have the answer to, other than the obvious one: When the U.S. markets trip up.

Tech stocks made most of the running, although some fell at the first fence and never recovered. Those included

Baltimore Technologies

(BALTV)

, down 226p, or 3.9%, at

56.04 ($88.54) and

Psion

, which closed down 24p, or 0.9%, at

27.78 after being up 300p at one point.

Those that stayed the course included

BATM Advanced Communications

, up 212p, or 5.6%, to

40.25 and

Colt Telecom

(COLTY)

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, up 140p, or 5.4%, at

27.12.

ARM Holdings

(ARMHY)

confirmed a 5-for-1 share split effective tomorrow, and the shares in their old form rose 102p, or 3.3%, to

31.70.

Reuters

(RTRSY)

responded to encouraging first quarter figures, which included a 58% rise in revenue at its

Instinet

subsidiary, with a gain of 23p, or 2.3% to

10.08.

Vodafone Airtouch

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was heavily traded, with 209 million shares changing hands, and closed up 17p, or 6.0%, at 303. On the other hand,

British Telecom

(BTY)

encountered profit-taking and settled 21p lower, or 1.8%, at

11.30.

In the oil sector,

BP Amoco

(BPA)

remained on offer, and settled 21p lower, or 4.0%, at 506. Much of this was considered technical selling following its purchase of

Atlantic Richfield

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and market makers expect it to recover as index trackers realign their portfolios to take into account BP Amoco's increased weighting in the FTSE 100.

Shell

eased 8p, or 1.7%, to 473.

The Continent's stock markets ended with modest gains for both old and new economy stocks. The

Xetra Dax

in Frankfurt ended up 9.35, or 0.1%, at 7196.49 and the

CAC 40

in Paris closed 86.90, or 1.4%, at 6147.44.

Siemens

(SMWAY)

and

Epcos

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were able to climb 4.31 euros, or 3.1%, to 145.20 ($138.27) and 5.75 euros, or 4.6%, to 130.00, respectively. But software maker

SAP

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faltered late in the day to slip 15.00 euros, or 2.4%, to 621.00.

Deutsche Telekom's

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Internet unit

T-Online

continued to make solid gains following its

debut Monday. T-Online finished up 1.86 euros, or 5%, at 39.36. That backed up the optimistic view some investors retain about technology stocks despite the hullabaloo over the past couple of days.

"Techs may be volatile in the short term, but over the longer haul they still have great potential," said one Frankfurt-based fund manager.

A day ahead of releasing earnings results Deutsche Telekom itself rose 1.60 euros, or 2.3%, to 72.60. Other European telecoms also finished higher, with

France Telecom

(FTE)

up 11.60 euros, or 7.5%, at 167.60 and

Telefonica

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up 0.27 euros, or 1.1%, at 24.07.

Financial stocks continued to be shunned by investors for the most part, with

Dresdner Bank

(DRSDY)

down 0.99 euros, or 2.3%, at 42.31 and

Deutsche Bank

(DTBKY)

off 0.50 euros, or 0.7%, at 73.40. But

Commerzbank

(CRZBY)

was able to buck the trend and finished up 1.15 euros, or 2.8%, to 41.60.