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RealTime IT News

Upgrades Send Internets Climbing

Internet stocks were turning in a strong showing in midday trading Thursday thanks to a slew of rating upgrades.

Just before noon, internet.com's Internet Stock Index was up 4.96, or 1.01 percent, to 495.59, the Nasdaq Composite had jumped 28.25 to 2,836.99 and the Dow Jones industrial average had climbed 20.26 to 11,056.60.

Most of the sector's leaders were higher, including eBay Inc. (EBAY) up 5-1/16 to 139-13/16. John Segrich of CIBC World Markets initiated coverage with a "strong buy" Thursday. He predicted the stock will hit $180 within a year.

Segrich also initiated coverage on Amazon.com Inc., (AMZN), up 1-3/4 to 63-3/16, Yahoo! Inc. (YHOO), up 6 to 159-7/16 and America Online Inc. (AOL), up 3/8 to 94-3/8.

Other leaders posting gains included DoubleClick Inc. (DCLK), adding 3-5/8 to 97-5/8, Exodus Communications Inc. (EXDS) up 5-5/8 to 77-5/8, Real Networks Inc. (RNWK) up 3-3/16 to 80-15/16 and Starmedia Network Inc. (STRM) gaining 3-13/16 to 44-1/8.

Priceline.com Inc. (PCLN) wasn't having such a good day, falling 7-13/16 to 55-7/16. Shares continue to come under pressure following news that Microsoft Corp.'s (MSFT) Expedia unit will offer a "name-your-price" hotel service.

1-800-Flowers.com Inc. (FLWS) was off 1-15/16 to 17-11/16. The online flower retailer reported a fourth-quarter loss of 8 cents a share compared to a profit of 5 cents a year ago.

Finally, shares of internet.com Corp. (INTM) had jumped 3-11/16 to 17-15/16. US Bancorp Piper Jaffray reiterated its "strong buy" rating on the stock, predicting the stock will hit $40 over the next 12 months.

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