Friday March 31, 6:01 pm Eastern Time
Nasdaq rallies but still ends week well off record
By Elizabeth Smith
NEW YORK, March 31 (Reuters) - The Nasdaq rallied on Friday to top off a harrowing week in which the tech-laden index swung wildly and, at one point, flirted with what would have been its largest-ever point drop in a single day.
Investors moved back into blue-chip techs, like chip maker Intel Corp. (NasdaqNM:INTC - news), and other big Nasdaq names like Internet router maker Cisco Corp. (NasdaqNM:CSCO - news) and, to a lesser degree, edged back into some biotechnology stocks. They kept a distance, though, from most second-tier tech shares and select Internet issues after Wall Street gurus questioned the sustainability of recent price gains.
Nasdaq's composite index (^IXIC - news) jumped 114.94 points, or 2.58 percent, to close at 4,572.83. The Nasdaq 100 index of top stocks (^NDX - news) rose even more sharply, racking up 147.65 points, or 3.47 percent, to end at 4,397.84.
The Nasdaq's rally on Friday came as a relief after a week in which the superstar index fell 500.56 points in three days and narrowly averted its worst single-point drop ever on Thursday. The index was down more than 6 percent, or 289 points, shortly before the close on Thursday, when it retraced some losses to close off 4.02 percent.
Friday's comeback wasn't enough to offset the damage the Nasdaq had sustained. The index slid 390.20 points, or 7.9 percent, for the week. The Nasdaq struck its record high this year on March 10 when it hit 5,048.62.