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European Midday Update: Tech, Telcos Dip After Greenspan's Comments

Major bourses were mixed as investors recovered from their anxiety to act on news of new Internet pricing.
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LONDON -- The

FTSE 100

began with a 40-point fall as investors in the tech and telecom sectors fretted over

Fed

Chairman

Alan Greenspan's

comments Monday, but they aren't yet falling in droves and the Footsie has since recouped some of the losses to stand just 28.4 points lower at 6539.4.

Baltimore Technologies

, which will probably become a Footsie constituent on Wednesday, fell 400p to 132.00 pounds,

Durlacher Corporation

lost 57p to 33.50 pounds, and

Colt Telecom

(COLT)

slipped 39p to 39.25 pounds before steadying to stand just 9p cheaper at 39.55 pounds.

News this morning that U.K. cable company

NTL

(NTLI)

will follow

Alta Vista's

lead and offer unmetered access to the Internet put further pressure on

British Telecom

(BTY)

shares, which fell 33p to 12.55 pounds. Fellow Net provider

Freeserve

(FREE)

, another likely Footsie constituent for Wednesday, fell 99p to 780p.

Vodafone AirTouch

(VOD) - Get Report

, sharply higher Monday as eager investors scrambled for weightings in the world's biggest mobile telephone company, shed 7.5p to 391.5, proving that it's always hard to resist a bit of profit-taking when the shares are close to their all-time high.

Other fallers this morning included

Psion

, which fell 211p to 63.50 pounds, and

Parity Group

, down 52p to 607, despite good results.

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In the media sector,

Pearson

continues to respond to Monday's strong figures with a further gain of 32p to 25.33 pounds, and

Reuters

(RTRSY)

rose 15p to 16.35 pounds.

The Continental stock markets were mixed. The

Xetra Dax

in Frankfurt was up 14.80 to 7990.58 and the

CAC 40

in Paris was off 29.61 to 6516.37.

Greenspan's shadow loomed large enough to offset surging financial issues in Frankfurt amid reports that

Deutsche Bank

(DTBKY)

and

Dresdner Bank

(DRSDY)

were in advanced talks to combine their retail operations. Deutsche Bank climbed 3.10 euros to 90.02 and Dresdner jumped 6.30 euros to 53.80.

German technology stocks were mixed, with electronics giant

Siemens

(SMAWY)

down 7 euros to 179 but software maker

SAP

(SAP) - Get Report

up 14.87 euros to 1024.87.

Like telecom stocks in the U.K., European telcos were also suffering.

Deutsche Telekom

(DT) - Get Report

fell 3.37 euros to 100.13 and

France Telecom

(FTE)

dropped 3 euros to 200. Spain's

Telefonica

(TEF) - Get Report

bucked the trend and rose 0.32 euros to 32.52.