Stay of Techs-ecution

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NEW YORK: Bloodied and bowed but hopefully bottomed-out, tech stocks got a reprieve Friday as traders went bargain-hunting amid the ruins of NASDAQ's week. The index was up 44 points in early afternoon after four-day losses of 200 points, or more that 12 percent. "It's a bounce-back from a horrible week," says FORTUNE writer Nelson Schwartz. "A lot of the earnings reports that came out of the sector were overly optimistic. But even so, a lot of people on the floor were surprised at the amount of hemorrhaging that went on."

Winners: None. Losers:, which dropped more than 28 points this week as some Internet-vendor mergers promised tougher competition for the online bookseller; Microsoft, which lost 20 points on general sector pessimism before recovering some on Thursday; Lycos, off by almost half its value in the past three days; and of course tech bellwether Yahoo, down 25 points since Tuesday alone. All four were perking up Friday -- has the sector stopped bleeding? "It depends," says Schwartz. "More earnings reports are due the next few weeks, and then we'll know." Considering the still-sorry economic state of Asia, which remains the sector's feast-or-famine export market, we may know already.