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In another sign that the security market—and the technology sector in general—is on the rebound, Juniper Networks Inc. agreed to acquire security appliance maker NetScreen Technologies Inc. for $4 billion in stock.

The purchase price is a premium of more than 50 percent for NetScreen’s shareholders. The company’s stock was trading at $26.40 at the end of last week and had a market capitalization of $3.25 billion. Each NetScreen shareholder will receive 1.4 shares of Juniper stock.

NetScreen, based in Sunnyvale, Calif., is one of a growing number of security appliance makers, and its acquisition by Juniper positions the combined company to compete with larger security and networking players, analysts said.

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