Originally created 03/02/00

Business briefs: Tech stocks lead in Dow's slim gain



NEW YORK -- Soaring telecommunications and technology stocks helped the Dow Jones industrials eke out a modest gain.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 9.62, to 10,137.93. Wednesday's gain came after the Dow spent much of the session in negative territory.

Advancing issues outnumbered decliners by a 10-9 margin on the New York Stock Exchange, where volume totaled 1.26 billion shares, compared with 1.18 billion in the previous session.

Correction

Because of a transmission error by a regional stock exchange, stock tables delivered by The Associated Press for publication in The Augusta Chronicle on Wednesday showed an erroneous last price for AT&T. The correct price was 49 7/16, up 4'. AP said it has corrected the price in its database and will use it to calculate the net change in today's paper.

Small-business conference set

AIKEN -- A Small Disadvantaged Business Assistance Conference, jointly sponsored by DESA Inc. and Westinghouse Savannah River Co. has been scheduled for 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. today at Aiken Conference Center, 214 Park Ave.

Charlene Cornwell, a spokeswoman with DESA, a minority consulting firm under contract with the Department of Energy and Savannah River Site, said the expo is a collaborative effort to bring public and private agencies together with small and minority businesses to encourage contracting opportunities.

State exports show modest gain

ATLANTA -- Georgia's 1999 exports rose only 0.7 percent above the previous year, growing slower than the national average of 1.8 percent, the Georgia Department of Industry Trade and Tourism reported this week. Georgia was the only state in the Southeast other than Tennessee to have an increase during a period when trade was dampened by economic turmoil in Asia and Latin America.

Significantly higher shipments to three of Georgia's top trading partners -- Canada, Japan and Mexico -- compensated for lower sales to the United Kingdom, Belgium and most Asian and Latin American countries.

Economic indicators increase

NEW YORK -- As the industrial economy grew at a faster rate in February, an index tracking the prices paid for manufacturing supplies shot up to a new five-year high, the National Association of Purchasing Management reported Wednesday. The higher costs mostly reflect rising oil prices.

Separately, the government reported that spending on construction projects jumped by 2.7 percent in January, the biggest increase in nearly two years.