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Another Winning Month

Factory expansion and the AOL-Microsoft settlement sent May into the history books on a positive note.

May ended on a merry note on Wall Street, with investors encouraged by signs of factory expansion from a new Chicago Purchasing Index report and a relatively quiet week on the geopolitical front.

The markets also got a boost from a settlement in the long-running dispute between AOL Time Warner and Microsoft. AOL rose 37 cents, or 2.5%, to $15.22. Microsoft rose 21 cents, to $24.61.

The InformationWeek 100 rose 3.05 points on Friday to 244.44--a gain of 1.3% for the day and a whopping 6.8% for the week. The Nasdaq-100 Index tracking stock rose 48 cents, or 1.6%, to end the month at $29.72--not far off its 52-week high of $31.70 and up 5.8% for the week. Volume was 78 million shares. The Nasdaq index rose 20.96 points, or 1.3%, for the day, to 1,595.91--its highest finish in a year. The tech-laden index has finished up in four consecutive months for the first time since late 1999.

The good times carried over to the broader markets as well. The Dow Jones industrials rose 139.08 points, or 1.6%, to 8,850.26, and finished May up 4.4%, its third straight winning month. The S&P 500 rose 13.95 points, or 1.5%, to 963.59, and ended the month up 5.1%.

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