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New Technology Funds Introduced

Despite an average 14 percent decline in performance among science, technology and telecommunications funds during April, fund companies continue to introduce technology funds. The average mutual fund declined 3.3 percent in value during April.

On May 1, Franklin-Templeton Distributors of San Mateo, Calif., introduced the Franklin Technology Fund, while Neuberger Berman Management of New York came out with the Neuberger Berman Technology Fund.

Both fund companies are downplaying technology funds' recent poor performance by marketing their funds as being able to take advantage of lower technology stock prices, said spokespersons at the companies.

"Many technology stocks are clearly on sale," said Andrea Trachtenberg, a Neuberger spokesperson.

"The volatility has created some buying opportunities," said Stacey Johnston, a Franklin-Templeton spokesperson.

Both Franklin-Templeton and Neuberger Berman planned their new funds in the beginning of the year, when many technology funds boasted triple-digit returns for 1999.