Bank technology stocks rose slightly last week, aided in part by a positive earnings report from Sun Microsystems Inc. that boosted the entire sector.

Sun said it earned a stronger-than-expected $223.2 million, before acquisition-related charges, in its fiscal second quarter. That was up 25% from a year earlier.

Most market indexes reported weekly increases. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 2.2%, to close Friday at 7753.55. The Nasdaq composite rose 3.9%, to close at 1562.9. Goldman, Sachs & Co.'s index, which lists many bank technology vendors, rose 4.4%, and closed at 143.5.

In the news, International Verifact Inc., a Toronto developer of point of sale systems for debit, credit, and smart cards, signed a definitive agreement to merge with Checkmate Electronics Inc.

Roswell, Ga.-based Checkmate develops point of sale software and terminals for check reading, payment authorization, and signature capture.

The stock-swap deal, which is expected to close in the spring, was valued at $50 million. The merged company is to be called IVI Checkmate Corp., and its common stock will be publicly traded in both Canada and the United States.

Checkmate's shares rose 18.75 cents for the week, and closed at $8.125 Friday. International Verifact's shares rose 31.25 cents, and closed at $7.25.

Also, shares of Hypercom Inc., a maker of point of sale systems, rose $2.4375, to $13.9375, on word of earnings of 23 to 25 cents a share. This would exceed expectations for earnings in a range of 21 to 23 cents.

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