B2B Stocks Part of Broad Net Rally

Investors were flocking to the Internet sector’s B2B darlings at midday Wednesday on the heels of a deal that will create an auction site for businesses to trade surplus items.

At 11:45 a.m. Eastern, internet.com’s Internet Stock Index had soared 38.89, or 3.8 percent, to 1,061.80, the Nasdaq Composite was up 113.23 to 4,824.91 and the Dow Jones industrial average had lost 69.11 to 10,838.23.

The session’s standouts including Metamor Worldwide Inc. (MMWW) had soared 18-5/16 to 34-5/16 after PSINet Inc. (PSIX) agreed to buy the Internet consultant for $1.9 billion in stock.

The purchase gives PSINet controlling interest in Metamor’s Xpedior Inc. (XPDR) consulting unit. Xpedior had soared 7-1/2 to 21-13/16.

FreeMarkets Inc. (FMKT) was up fractionally to 174 after hitting 180. The B2B e-commerce play purchased Surplus Record Inc. and SR Auction for $18 million.

While the news was doing little for FreeMarkets shares, other B2B plays were rallying on the news, including Ariba Inc. (ARBA), up 19-3/8 to 260-3/8.

Several other leaders were joining in the rally, including Broadcom Corp. (BRCM), up 9-15/16 to 237-15/16, Exodus Communications (EXDS), climbing 7 to 162-1/4, Infospace.com (INSP), vaulting 18-7/8 to 178-1/2, Doubleclick Inc. (DCLK), up 7-1/4 to 104-1/4 and eBay Inc. (EBAY) had risen 11-3/8 to 225-7/8.

Liberate Technologies (LBRT) had gained 9 to 79. The set-top box maker reported a quarterly loss of 14 cents a share before one-time items, 4 cents better than expectations.

GoTo.com Inc. (GOTO) was up 2-1/16 to 45-7/8. The search engine sealed a linking deal with Go2Net Inc. (GNET).

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