The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEX: ^DJI) closed down only 0.05% today, but that final total doesn't reflect the negativity felt at the market's open. The market was down about 1% shortly into trading before steadily rebounding.

However, bucking the downtrend today were the closely related technology and telecom sectors. The three highest performers on the day came from the tech and telecom space.

Company Name

Percent Gain Today

Year-to-Date Gain

Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) 1.30% 14.06%
IBM (NYSE: IBM) 1.07% 4.69%
Verizon (NYSE: VZ) 1.07% (6.25%)

Source: Google Finance.

There wasn't any particularly big news out the either sector today. There was a smattering of earnings from smaller tech companies, with the earnings to watch this week coming on Tuesday, when Amazon.com reports, and Wednesday, when mobile giant Qualcomm weighs in.

Overall, the day extends a streak of technology outperformance this year. The Nasdaq (INDEX: ^IXIC) has gained about 7.7%, far outpacing the Dow Jones' 3.6% gain. Strong earnings from the space have helped; both IBM and Microsoft surged after earnings, and you would have had to live under a rock to not hear about Apple's amazing earnings last week.

However, there seem to be a few more pertinent factors. First, investors have been running back to risk. Some of this year's best performers so far this year were among last year's worst. Look no further than Netflix for proof of this. Second, blue-chip tech stocks have been trading at low multiples while maintaining heady growth. It was only a matter of time before investors dipped a toe back into the very reasonably priced pool of tech stocks.

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Eric Bleeker owns shares of no companies listed above. The Motley Fool owns shares of Amazon.com, Microsoft, Apple, Qualcomm, and IBM. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Amazon.com, Microsoft, Apple, and Netflix and creating bull call spread positions in Microsoft and Apple. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.