Microsoft Props Up Competitors

Friday’s decision that Microsoft Corp. is a monopoly was bad news for the computer giant, but as a result fellow tech companies prospered from the news by afternoon.

At midday,’s Internet Stock Index was up 19.38, or 3.27 percent to 611.41, the Nasdaq Composite rose 15.56 to 3117.85, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 17.13 to 10687.35.

Dow Jones’ newest member Microsoft (MSFT) was down 3 9/16 to 88, while many investors are taking the opportunity today to buy into the stock, which investment houses are reiterating a strong buy.

Competitors like Red Hat, Inc. (RHAT) and America Online, Inc. (AOL) saw their stocks rise on the Microsoft news. At midday, Linux provider Red Hat was up 15 11/16 to 101 5/8 and America Online, which competes with Microsoft lately in the portal and instant messaging space, rose 2 7/8 to 148 3/8.

As for other industry leaders, Real Networks, Inc. (RNWK) climbed 13 3/8 to 148 3/8 as it split its Web site into two new
business- and consumer-oriented portals, and linked its RealPlayer 7 upgrade to its newly unveiled network services., Inc. (AMZN) was up 9 1/16 to 74, eBay, Inc. (EBAY) was up 4 1/8 to 137 3/8 and Yahoo! (YHOO) rose 5 1/2 to 188 15/16.

Elsewhere on Wall Street e-commerce companies were having a busy day. (PCLN) was up on news that it will begin to offer name-your-price telephone services.

By afternoon it was trading at 57 13/16, up 5 3/16. Internet grocer Peapod, Inc. (PPOD) meanwhile fell 1 3/16 to 10 1/2 as the company reported its cash and securities may not be enough to fund its operations next year.

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