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Updated from 7:14 p.m. EDT


(ORCL) - Get Oracle Corporation Report

may have been today's most active stock but it was No. 4 on


ECN, summoning a measly 39,000 shares. But then again, volume was sparse down the board.

The software maker danced 9% lower by day after relinquishing some rope in its epic tug of war against


(MSFT) - Get Microsoft Corporation Report


Investors who barreled out of Softee shares during the eye of its legal storm are likely to slink back to the Redmond-headed step child as the hurricane dissipates to a drizzle, according to

J.P. Morgan

analyst William Epifanio. The analyst downgraded Oracle to market performer from buy based on its inflated value and Monday's departure of President and COO Ray Lane.

Epifanio saw Lane's defection to Wall Street as a great loss for the software company and warned that the days of big earnings would soon be a memory. Shares fell about 3 7/8 to 80 3/16 Monday, after Lane's announcement.

Oracle heard after-hours voices and fluctuated between a perky green and sagging red. The lighter side of the split personality had the upper hand, as the stock rose 39/64 to 72 7/8 on Island and gained 9/16 to 72 7/8 on 241,000


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elbowed the Big O out of the limelight after a dramatic 52% slide today. The oops began at 8:08 a.m. EDT when the company warned that second-quarter earnings per sharewould be 2 cents instead of the 8 cents Wall Street expected, due to delays in closing sales figures.

The security software maker was feeling insecure despite company qualifiers that pegged the lower results on revenue timing not lost business. The company said that revenue will be slightly higher than the $29.1 million reported last quarter and will better last year's second-quarter results of $19.8 million. The company will report earnings July 18 after the bell.

Goldman Sachs

cut Entrust to market performer and dropped it off its recommended list.

The late-night search for self-esteem was stemmed as traders continued to lose faith after the day's slaughter. The tech firm fell 3/16 to 36 1/2 on 45,000 Island shares.

BMC Software


lost almost 40% during the day session, maimed by the same beast that cut down Entrust, disappointment.

The business software company hit a 52-week-low today after shedding a third of its market cap on warnings that first-quarter profits may sink 57% below last's year's results on weakness in the mainframe business. Translated into shiny pennies, this quarter's earnings will be 18 cents to 21 cents a share compared with 42 cents at the same time last year. Analysts reckoned that the company would earn 46 cents a share this time around.

And we all know what happens when companies defy the psychic visions of the Wall Street consensus Mafia.

Despite its two broken legs, BMC limped higher earlier in the session, lost its crutches then again found some support. It ended 1/2 higher to 21 13/16 on 47,000 Island shares.

covered BMC and the other earnings warnings that roiled today's market earlier.

Phone carrier equipment makers saw a smackdown today that left a red mark on



. The California-based company was the session's biggest loser among smaller equipment manufactures, falling 14%. There was no late-night comeback for Redback, which continued to fall 1 5/32 to 149 1/8 on 11,000 shares.

Money can't buy love, but it sure as heck can snag a place on the

S&P 500. After a volatile day that ended 11% into the green

Qwest Communications


took is place on the closely watched large-cap index, replacing

U S West

after buying the company. The merger was completed Friday, with 882 million shares issued in a deal that swapped 1.73 shares of Qwest for each U S West share.

As usual, the day-long celebration of the Q's S&P debut was exhausted by night and mild profit-taking set in. The broadband Internet communications company fell 3/4 to 57 1/4 on 2.3 million Instinet shares.

Things are bigger in Texas. Dallas-based

Paging Network


spiked almost 27% or 17/64 today, dipped into the red then rebounded 7/256 to 1 71/256. Though it was the most popular stock on Island there was no news to explain it. The swells of rumor that usually clog trader message boards were replaced with questions. Company officials were not available for comment. But then again, after 4 p.m. on a scorching Texas afternoon, even executives at a wireless paging company tend to misplace their beepers.

Tech had a bad day today, and Canadian fiber-optic firm

JDS Uniphase


got caught in the selloff. Late in the session

Thomas Weisel Partners

initiated coverage on the company with a strong buy rating based on a strong demand environment and an aggressive management team. The news was not enough to dig the company out of its daytime hole but lifted it 2 to 121 1/8 on 16,000 shares on Island.

This information is provided by Instinet, a wholly owned subsidiary of Reuters (RTRSY) . For further information, please contact Instinet at

Island ECN, owned by Datek Online, offers trading, mainly in Nasdaq-listed stocks, from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. EDT.


explains how the rules change when the sun goes down in Investing Basics: Night Owl, a section devoted to after-hours trading.