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NEW YORK, April 18 (Reuters) - Shares of mid-and smallcap stocks were led lower on Wednesday by the technology sector after weak earnings reports from bellwethers IBM and Intel.
The small-cap info technology sector index fell 1.6 percent. International Business Machines Corp missed its revenue forecast, sending shares down about 3 percent, while Intel's results failed to make a "bull case" for the stock. Intel shares slipped nearly 2 percent.
The lackluster reports from the two technology heavyweights came at the start of what has so far been a strong earnings season.
Among small-cap stocks, shares of Intermec Inc plunged 27 percent to $5.40 the day after the company gave a weaker-than-expected business update. Due to lack of demand in Europe, its first quarter revenue for 2012 is expected to be $180 million, down from its previous forecast of about $200 million.
Shares of Chesapeake Energy Corp fell 7.2 percent to $17.75. The stock was the most actively traded on the New York Stock Exchange after a Reuters report that CEO Aubrey K. McClendon did not disclose loans of as much as $1.1 billion over the last three years against his stake in thousands of the company's oil and natural gas wells.
Trading in the company's stock outstripped even Bank of America, with its massive share float, and was approaching nearly triple the recent daily average by midday.
The S&P MidCap 400 index fell 0.6 percent. The S&P SmallCap 600 index lost 1.3 percent. In comparison, the benchmark S&P 500 fell 0.5 percent.