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IT companies now largest sector in S&P 500

22 May, 2008

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NEW YORK: Is the Internet boom back? No, but information technology companies have again overtaken the financial industry as the largest sector in the S&P 500 index, Standard & Poor`s said Wednesday.

IT was last the top dog of the index in early 2002 as tech bubble was deflating, according to Howard Silverblatt, senior index analyst at Standard & Poor`s.

At Tuesday`s close, IT represented 16.26 percent of the S&P 500, compared with 16.19 percent for financials, Silverblatt wrote in a report. It expanded its lead on Wednesday.

At the peak of the boom in March 2000, the IT sector made up 34.51 percent of the index, Silverblatt said.

This time, the IT sector is not the biggest because of giddy growth, but because it`s been hit less hard than the financial sector by the credit crunch and economic weakness.

Financial stocks have retreated 29.11 percent since their peak on Oct. 9 last year, according to Silverblatt`s calculation, while IT companies have lost 8.74 percent.

"Information Technology stocks didn`t go up, the leaders went down," Silverblatt wrote.

The trend continued Wednesday with the financial sector losing 2.6 percent and IT retreating 1.9 percent.


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