By Dow Jones Business News, March 13, 2013, 01:46:00 PM EDT
By Dan Gallagher, MarketWatch
SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) -- Tech stocks showed signs of life in afternoon trading Wednesday, with gains from
Netflix Inc. and VMware Inc. standing out in the sector's trading action.
The Nasdaq Composite (RIXF) fell rose 0.2% to 3,248, while the Philadelphia Semiconductor Index (SOX) rose 0.3% and
the Morgan Stanley High-Tech Index (MSH) added a fraction.
Netflix ( NFLX ) flexed its muscles and rose 7% to $194.95 a share. Before the opening bell, the company announced a
deal that would add new social features to the Facebook pages of its subscribers. Such a move has been highly
anticipated ever since Netflix CEO Reed Hastings joined Facebook's board of directors.
But the news failed to lift the shares of Facebook (FB) itself, which fell 2.2% to $27.22. See: Netflix getting more
sociable with Facebook.
VMware ( VMW ) climbed by 9%, to $82.13 a share after the enterprise software firm told a meeting of investors that it
expects annual revenue to grow between 15% and 20% from 2014 to 2016. The company was hosting an investor meeting on
Wednesday, where it outlined several initiatives expected to drive future growth. EMC ( EMC ) , which still owns a
majority stake in VMware, was up 2.6%.
Silver Springs Networks (SSNI), a Silicon Valley firm that makes networking technology for electric utilities, jumped
more than 27% on its IPO debut. The firm priced its shares at the mid-point of its expected range at $17, and was last
trading at $21.66.
Declines came from Texas Instruments ( TXN ), which fell almost 1%, and Freescale Semiconductor ( FSL ), which dipped into
the red after Stacy Rasgon of Bernstein Research downgraded the two chip makers to neutral ratings, citing the need to "
move to the sidelines on cyclically-exposed names" based on signs of higher inventories and "modest" expectations.
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