Economic Figures Help Internets End Week On A High Note

Higher-than-expected wage growth in May and a rush of institutional buying helped Internet stocks post strong gains Friday to end the short week on an uptick.’s Internet Stock Index ended up 21.44, or 4.61 percent, to 486.45, the Nasdaq Composite gained 74.64 to 2,477.96 and the Dow Jones industrial average jumped 136.15 to 10,799.84

One of the sector’s biggest upside movers was Corp. (BYND) which soared 4-13/16 to 22-1/4. The company, along with Microsoft Corp. and Intellisys Technology Corp., was awarded a $120 million contract by the Internal Revenue Service to electronically deliver and maintain Microsoft software on 130,000 IRS computers.

CS First Boston also upped its fiscal year 2000 earnings estimates for to a loss of $1.54 a share from a $1.61 loss.

The day’s biggest names were helped by mutual fund managers who decided to move back into the sector. That helped shares of Yahoo! Inc. (YHOO), which jumped 12-1/16 to 147-7/16, Inc. (BCST), which gained 10-7/16 to 111-5/16 and America Online Inc. (AOL), up 12 to 117-3/4.

A number of initial public offerings had good debuts Friday. Online investment bank Wit Capital Group (WITC) zoomed 5-7/8 to 14-7/8. The company sold 7.6 million shares at $9 Thursday, raising $68.4 million.

Cable Internet company High Speed Access Corp. (HSAC) soared 7-3/8 to 20-3/8. Online Resources and Communications Corp. (ORCC) had a lackluster debut. The company, which uses Asynchronous Transfer Mode to allow its customers to offer online banking services, gained only 1/16 to 14-1/16.

One of the day’s biggest losers was Excite @Home Corp. (ATHM) which plunged 10-3/4 to 94-1/2. Investors sold its shares after a federal judge in Oregon ruled Friday that AT&T Corp., which owns @Home partner Tele-Communications Inc., could not exclude other Internet service providers from its cable systems.

IXL Enterprises Inc. (IIXL) ended off 1-3/16 to 16-11/16 after being as high as 21-3/4 earlier in the session. The Internet consultant debuted on Thursday after selling a 9 percent stake, raising $72 million.

Custom Tracks (CUST) sunk 6-3/8 to 44-3/4. Last week, the company sued e-mail provider Critical Path alleging it had violated a confidentiality agreement.

DLJdirect (DIR) shed 1-7/16 to 29-1/2. On Thursday, DLJdirect lost its top ranking on Gomez Advisors’ Internet broker scorecard to E*Trade Group Inc. E*Trade (EGRP) added 5/16 to 37-11/16. Inc. (AMZN) climbed 3-3/8 to 108-7/16 despite a threat by The New York Times Co. to take court action against the online bookseller’s use of The New York Times bestseller list in promotions.

[email protected] Inc. (NTBK) lost 2-3/8 to 29-5/8. The company Friday completed a follow-up offering of 3 million shares at $29 each and sold $100 million in subordinated notes.

Cybercash Inc. (CYCH) dipped 9/16 to 12-13/16. The company filed to float a $60 million shelf offering which allows companies to sell securities over a two-year period to raise operating capital.

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