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RealTime IT News

ISDEX Slips As Quarter Nears End

With less than two trading days left in the month, it appears internet.com's Internet Stock Index is determined to give back most of June's gains.

Through June 21, the ISDEX had climbed 22.5 percent and was well on its way to its best month of the year.

But a slump this week that saw 33 of its 50 member stocks lose ground has left the ISDEX sputtering toward the second-quarter finish line. The ISDEX closed Wednesday at 730, a drop of 5.9 percent for the week.

And in early trading Thursday, the index slumped even further to 720, leaving June's gains at 13.7 percent and dwindling.

For the year, the ISDEX is now down 16.3 percent, having fallen in four of the five months before June. To get back to break-even, the index must reach a price of 860.35.

While only three ISDEX companies posted double-digit gains this week, 18 ISDEX stocks lost at least 10 percent. Let's look at the biggest movers, both north and south:

SportsLine.com , up 20.9 percent

Shares of the sports content site finished trading on May 25 at $10.13, their lowest closing price since October 1998. Since then SPLN has climbed 75 percent, but remains far below its 52-week high of $82.25 set last Dec. 21.

Virtually all of this week's gains came Wednesday in the wake of news that SportsLine.com, in conjunction with Major League Baseball, will provide wireless access to Baseball Live, a feature that gives users up-to-the-minute scores, situations and statistics from pro games. This should be a hit among baseball junkies and gamblers equipped with Palm handheld devices.

S1 Corp. , up 15.7 percent

The financial services software vendor floundered for more than a week after analysts lowered revenue forecasts for the company on June 19. It wasn't doing anything to recover those losses until Wednesday, when shares rose 20.4 percent after subsidiary VerticalOne announced the deployment of its "personal account aggregation" service through Webplayer, an Internet appliance marketed by British entertainment giant Virgin.

The aggregation service allows online customers to easily access all of their personal account information through one log-in and password. The significance here is that this is the first deployment of the service through a Web device.

RSA Security , up 13.7 percent

Unlike SPLN and SONE, RSA Security isn't bouncing off new or recent lows, having reached its nadir more than two months ago. Like SportsLine.com, however, RSAS is benefiting from a wireless endeavor. The company last week said it has begun shipping security software for wireless e-commerce.

Allaire , down 18.5 percent

The newest member of the ISDEX has one of this spring's spikiest charts, as shares alternate between robust run-ups and terrifying free-falls. It's on the downside this week, with no catalyst in sight. Still, the application development software specialist is coming off two consecutive quarters of profitability and strong revenue growth due to the popularity of its flagship ColdFusion software.

Inktomi , down 18.5 percent

One of the top-performing Internet stocks of the year gets hammered after Yahoo! announced it would drop Inktomi's search technology for competing software from Google. As I wrote earlier this week, this is a market over-reaction. I expect INKT shares to recover soon.



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