PeopleSoft ( PSFT) shares have bucked the tech slide in recent days, enjoying a rebound as investors game Oracle's ( ORCL) chances of winning the government's antitrust case. Shares of PeopleSoft rose 11 cents, or 0.6%, to $18.19 Wednesday, completing an 8.1% jump since July 6, a day before the company warned of disappointing quarterly results. By contrast, the Goldman Sachs Software Index has fallen 3.8% during the same period while Oracle's stock is down 3.7% after falling 1.9% to $10.79 on Wednesday. PeopleSoft's gain comes as some investors see rising odds of Oracle defeating the Department of Justice's bid to block its hostile takeover of its rival. Bolstering that argument, say its adherents, is a court order signed July 10 asking both sides for more detail on the legal theory behind the case. "It's a much closer call than anticipated when the government brought its suit," said Steven Cohen, an M&A arbitrage fund manager with Kellner DiLeo Cohen & Co. in New York. The conventional wisdom was the DOJ would have the upper hand, but Oracle ended up with a surprisingly strong showing in court, explained Cohen, whose firm holds PeopleSoft shares. Now "I think people are saying, 'Gee, if Oracle prevails here, they may really get this thing cranked up again, and PeopleSoft is going to have a major problem and they're going to have to do something,'" Cohen added. "The whole takeover thing gets new life breathed into it." Cohen cited the four-page order from U.S. District Court Judge Vaughn Walker as a sign the judge is skeptical about the case. In that order, the judge asked both sides to provide more guidance on assessing the competitive effects of the acquisition. The legal theory for assessing such effects that seems most appropriate for the DOJ's case "appears to have received substantial criticism from antitrust scholars and little, if any, exposure in the crucible of litigation," Walker wrote.