LONDON -- It's Valentine's Day -- but no massacre yet. The trend first thing was naturally lower, given Wall Street's fall on Friday -- the
Dow Jones Industrial Average
has fallen 10% since the start of the year, and this is now officially deemed a "correction" -- but the U.K. market appeared a bit steadier midmorning.
index kicked off with a 28-point fall, drifted down 43 points, but by midmorning was trundling along at 6161.2, down 32.4. The heavyweight
was down 10p at 341, and was responsible for about 15 points of the fall.
For those of you with a nervous disposition, here's the latest on tech stocks. Following the 90-point
drop on Friday, the trend, not surprisingly, was downward. Losses were not that hefty in percentage terms, but looked pretty hideous in pounds and pence.
, which went into orbit last week, has been extremely volatile. Down 3 pounds at the outset, the shares have since rebounded and were 13.75 pounds higher at 122.70 pounds.
fell 111p to 44.00 pounds.
fell 135p to 28.52 pounds. Nevertheless, the
index was 0.62% off at 4817.16.
Technology shares in Frankfurt were also mostly lower. The blue-chip techs were mixed, however, with software maker
down 7.15 euros at 829.45 and
up 0.90 euros at 172.40.
Despite Monday's broader losses, some analysts think Europe could become a tech investor's heaven. "Europe's technological issues have long stood in the shadow of the large U.S. stocks," says Robert Halver, an equity strategist for
Delbrueck Asset Management
in Frankfurt. But now conditions "point to a continuation of the outperformance of European vs. U.S. high-tech issues in general."
Among U.K. banks, it was
Alliance & Leicester's
turn to report good results, and the shares responded with a gain of 21p to 523.
Cable & Wireless
rose 32p to 13.90 pounds in anticipation of a formal offer for its Hong Kong subsidiary from
Pacific Century Cyberworks
The Continent's stock markets started the week out mixed, with France and Germany lower in early trade. The
in Frankfurt was down 49.15 at 7562.40 and the
in Paris was 82.14 lower at 6204.87.
, which just replaced
in the Dax, looks set to become a new champion for Euro tech and gained 7.40 euros to 171.90. Mannesmann shares were 13.30 euros higher at 328.30.
Other telecoms were lower.
dipped 7 euros to 165.90 and
was 1.40 euros lower at 87.70.