Honey, I Shrunk The List Of 'Net Gainers!
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For many months following the meltdown of Internet stocks that began in March, the number of 'Net tickers hanging onto gains for the year held around 30 or so, occasionally bouncing up to three dozen.
Now, as we slog toward December, the latest tech nosedive leaves us facing the sobering prospect that fewer than 10 of the nearly 300 Internet companies trading since last Dec. 31 will post year-to-date advances. That's less than 4%. I doubt even the most bearish investor could have predicted such a sorry showing for 'Net stocks.
Among the stocks recently tumbling into the red are Broadcom, Ariba, Wireless Facilities, Art Technology Group, Aether Systems, Perficient, Cisco Systems, Bottomline Technologies and CacheFlow.
By my count, that leaves only 13 'Net stocks on the north side of break-even. The most-represented sectors are Security, with four companies on the list, and Performance Software, with three.
Here are the YTD gainers through Monday's close:
Ticker Company % Gain Sector GENI GenesisIntermedia 212% Consultants/Designers JNPR Juniper Networks 149% Speed/Bandwidth CHKP Check Point Software 118% Security RIMM Research In Motion 68% Wireless IDTC IDT 51% ISPs/Access Providers NETE Netegrity 37% Security CLKS click2learn.com 29% Internet Services OTEX Open Text 25% Performance Software ISSX Internet Security Systems 20% Security ITWO i2 Technologies 16% E-commerce Enablers IWOV Interwoven 15% Performance Software TIBX TIBCO Software 4% Performance Software WGRD WatchGuard Technologies 2% SecurityWhile some of the fall-aways could reappear on the list, notably Cisco, market trends certainly don't point in that direction. And more than half of the current survivors have a tenuous grip on YTD gains. Only the top four or five companies listed appear to be relatively assured of maintaining any kind of advance.
All in all, this is a year that can't end soon enough for Internet investors. Trouble is, the slate doesn't get wiped clean come 2001.