RealTime IT News

Net Stocks Regain Confidence

Internet stocks rocketed higher on Thursday following a slew of analyst upgrades and i3 Mobile's splash into the public marketplace.

internet.com's Internet Stock Index was up 32.96, or 3.84 percent, to 890.50, the Nasdaq composite rose 98.34 to 4,267.56, and the Dow Jones industrial average gained 80.35 to 11,114.27.

Big winners included Check Point Software (CHKP) +18-1/4 to 176-3/4, eBay (EBAY) +16-1/16 to 182, and Infospace (INSP) up 19-7/8 to 125.

i3Mobile (IIIM) rose 9, or 56 percent, to 25 in its debut. The company delivers content such as stock quotes and weather to mobile devices.

Shares of Yahoo! (YHOO) fell 11-9/16 to 154, despite reporting better than expected earings for its first quarter of the year. Yahoo's earnings before unusual items amounted to $63.3 million, or $0.10 per diluted share, beating analyst earnings-per-share (EPS) estimates by a penny. The company reported revenues of $228.4 million, beating the consensus estimate of $205 million. It's interesting to note that Yahoo has now beaten consensus EPS estimates for 16 straight quarters. In addition to the earnings call, Yahoo also named Susan Decker, the former global head of research at Donald, Lufkin & Jenrette, as its new chief financial officer. Decker replaces Gary Valenzuela, who will retire this summer.

WebTrends Corp. (WEBT) was up 1-7/16 to 67-11/16. Merrill Lynch initiated coverage with a "near-term accumulate" and "long-term buy" rating. In addition, internet.com analyst Tom Taulli featured WebTrends in his Morning Report.

Internet Capital Group (ICGE) added 11/64 to 73-7/8, VerticalNet (VERT) gained 4-3/4 to 59-3/4, Onvia.com (ONVI) was up 3-15/16 to 17, and Commerce One (CMRC) rose 16-3/8 to 128-7/8.

Salomon Smith Barney initiated coverage on Priceline.com (PCLN) with a "buy" rating and $130 price target and Amazon.com (AMZN) with a "buy," $130 price target. Shares of PCLN finished up 5-3/16 to 77-1/8 and AMZN shares gained 2-1/16 to 64-1/4.

Jupiter Communications (JPTR) jumped 10-9/16 to 32-13/16. The online research firm announced that it expects revenues of $16.5 million for its first quarter, representing a 175 percent increase from the same period a year ago. Jupiter attributes the growth to increases in contract value and strong revenues from its conferences.

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