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E*TRADE Acquires ClearStation

E*TRADE Group Inc. Monday acquired ClearStation Inc., a financial Web community.

ClearStation allows members to set up stock portfolios and share those with other community members. The site also carries news and has a number of links to educational resources.

Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

E*TRADE will operate ClearStation as a subsidiary and an independent web site. The stock still needs to be approved by E*Trade shareholders. The deal is expected to be finalized later this month.

San Francisco-based ClearStation's Web site launched in July of last year and has roughly 90,000 registered members, according to company estimates. The site is free, supported by ads, and provides a proprietary three-point approach to investing, combining technical analysis with fundamental analysis and community discussions. The site's tools include an automated trend detection system which scans the market during the day, creating a dynamic lists of stocks that enter price action trends.

"Our goal is to become a premier digital financial media company," said Christos M. Cotsakos, E*TRADE Group's chairman and chief executive officer.

"As individual investors increasingly move to investing online, their power has become a new force in today's global financial markets. We view ClearStation, with its high-caliber member base, as another way for E*TRADE to unite this important shared interest group," Cotsakos said.

"Our combination with E*TRADE provides ClearStation with tremendous brand association and the potential to reach a global base of independent investors who turn to E*TRADE and its international affiliates for financial content and services," said Kris Skrinak, Clearstation's president and chief executive officer.

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