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European Midday Update: Europe Resilient in Face of Nasdaq Fall

Investors in U.K. tech stocks appear undecided as to which way the wind is blowing.
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LONDON -- Despite the overnight fall in the Nasdaq, investors in U.K. technology stocks appeared to be in a quandary as to whether they should buy or sell Wednesday. Investors were keeping their cards close to their vests this morning, and the Techmark index retraced an early 23-point gain to stand virtually unchanged at 3997.

The 100-point gain in the

Dow Jones Industrial Average

, however, gave a lift to London's Old Economy stocks, and the

FTSE 100

advanced 37.3 to 6416.50.

The telecom sector was in fine health, with

Vodafone AirTouch

(VOD) - Get Vodafone Group Plc Report

rallying 3p to 316 (US$5.02), helped by

Merrill Lynch

increasing its price target on the company's stock from

5 to

5.90. Vodafone's acquisition of Germany's

Mannesmann

(MNNSY)

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is set to be cleared by the

European Commission

later Wednesday, with conditions, of course.

British Telecom

(BTY)

moved up 31p to

11.05, but

Colt Telecom

(COLT)

slipped 24p to

28.25.

In media,

Pearson

(PRSNY)

rose 95p to

22.00 before easing back 25p to stand at

21.30, and

Reuters

(RTRSY)

edged forward 20p to

11.40.

Tech sector investors appeared undecided.

Logica

gained 114p to

20.50,

ARM Holdings

(ARMHY)

rose 53p to

34.50 and

Baltimore Technologies

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rallied 286p to

75.10. However,

BATM Advanced Communications

fell 82p to

47.80,

London Bridge Software

was down 45p to

45.30 and

JSB Software

slipped 25p to

18.75.

However, Continental technology stocks were decidedly better, helping lift Europe's other stock markets marginally higher. The

Xetra Dax

in Frankfurt was up 55.84 to 7498.50, and the

CAC 40

in Paris was 24.94 higher to 6286.36.

In Frankfurt,

Epcos

(EPC) - Get Edgewell Personal Care Co. Report

rose 6.55 euros to 131.55 (US$126.14), and software maker

SAP

(SAP) - Get SAP SE Report

climbed 20.10 euros to 675.99. But

Siemens

(SMAWY)

fell 2.04 euros to 143.10.

Dresdner Bank

(DRSDY)

was up 0.70 euro to 47.30 after announcing a shakeup at its investment banking unit.

Deutsche Bank

(DTBKY)

was up 0.10 euro to 77.60, but

Commerzbank

(CRZBY)

was 0.29 euro lower to 39.70.

Not all telecom stocks were able to rise with their tech brethren, as

France Telecom

(FTE)

fell 0.50 euro to 168 and

Deutsche Telekom

(DT) - Get Dynatrace, Inc. Report

was down 2 euros to 74.50.

Telefonica

(TEF) - Get Telefónica SA Report

, however, was up 0.49 euro to 25.44.