RealTime IT News

Free ISPs Among Internet Standouts on Record Nasdaq Day

Internet issues remained strong in Tuesday's afternoon trading, helping the Nasdaq achieve its largest single point gain in its history. Helping investor sentiment, the Federal Reserve Tuesday opted to stand pat on interest rates during its final meeting of the year.

internet.com's Internet Stock Index gained 43.20, or 5.21 percent, to 871.86, the Nasdaq Composite jumped 127.17 to 3911.04 and the Dow Jones industrial average closed up 56.27 to 11200.54.

Yahoo! (YHOO) rose 36-1/16 to 405-9/16. Web Side Story, a traffic analysis company, reported that Yahoo! now accounts for close to 56 percent of all search engine referrals.

Juno Online Services (JWEB) gained 37-3/4, or 130 percent, to 66-3/4. The stock surged following Monday's announcement that the free e-mail pioneer will now offer free Internet access to its users. The news also benefitted Britain's Freeserve (FREE), sending shares up 17-1/4 to 101-1/4.

Business-to-business remained a hot sector as CommerceOne (CMRC) jumped 57 to 480 and Internet Capital Group (ICGE) rocketed 40-3/8 higher to 184.

NBC Internet (NBCI) leaped 14-1/4 to 93-1/4. Deutsche Banc Alex. Brown initiated coverage of the Web media company with a "strong buy" and set a $120 target.

Disney Internet tracking stock, GO.com (GO) advanced 5-7/8 to 27-3/4. Schroder & Co. upgraded the stock to an "outperform significantly" and attached a $33 price target.

Akamai Technologies (AKAM) rose 15-5/8 to 301-7/8. Road Runner will deploy Akamai's servers across its high-speed Internet access network.

CMGI (CMGI) soared 47-13/16 to 270. Merrill Lynch analyst Henry Blodget started coverage with a near-term "accumulate" and a long-term "buy" rating.

Media Metrix came out with its monthly Web ratings; important at such early stages in the Internet's evolution, these numbers give Internet stocks a lot of their momentum.

According to the firm, total U.S. Web users increased 750,000 from 63.9 million in October to 64.6 million in November. The percentage growth is better than the past four months, which averaged 240,000 Web users.

More importantly, there was evidence of strong growth in average minutes and pageviews per user. These metrics have a large impact on advertising and e-commerce dollars. Once again, It seems Internet investors are riding the fourth quarter seasonal momentum that these Media Metrix numbers seem to reinforce.

internet.com's CyberAtlas publishes the full Media Metrix monthly reports.

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