(Updated from 6:32 p.m. EST)
This past week has seen record volume in extended trading, as a deluge of earnings news poured in after the bell. Indeed, on Tuesday evening, electronic trading platform
ECN set a volume record of 8.2 million shares. But as investors prepared to take a break from the market over the weekend, traffic in the after-hours session thinned.
In the regular session, the
Nasdaq Composite Index closed higher (though just barely) for the third day in a row. The technology-laden index is now up more than 12% for the year. Perhaps market players tonight were content to quit while they were ahead.
Amgen Jumps On News of Patent Infringement
Still, stocks with news have attracted buyer attention this evening. After the closing bell,
reported that a federal judge has ruled that at least one of the biotech giant's patents for its anemia drug,
, was infringed upon by
Epogen is one of Amgen's leading pharmaceutical products -- the biotech company recorded $1.8 billion in sales from the drug in 1999. Revenue from Epogen, including sales by Amgen licensing partner
Johnson & Johnson
, totaled $4 billion. Amgen is slated to report fourth-quarter earnings results next Wednesday.
In recent action, shares of Amgen soared 21.3% to $72.38 on
and surged 20.9% to $72.51 on
In other biotech news tonight,
announced that a clinical trial measuring HIV patients' resistance to viral drugs failed to show "statistical significance."
At last look, shares of ViroLogic had dropped 5.5% to $7.15 on Island.
Tech Stocks Show Small Price Movements
dropped 0.2% to $60.88 on Instinet but gained 0.3% to $61.19 on Island.
gained less than 1% on Instinet and Island. Both companies reported earnings results last night.
-- which also reported earnings this week -- fell less than 1% on Instinet and Island.
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Island ECN, owned by Datek Online, offers trading, mainly in Nasdaq-listed stocks, from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. EST.
explains how the rules change when the sun goes down in Investing Basics: Night Owl, a section devoted to after-hours trading.