Net Stocks Regain Lost Ground

Internet shares ended the week on a high note Friday, as a number of shares that have been battered heavily in recent sessions made a strong comeback.

internet.com’s Internet Stock Index gained 25.94, or 3.46 percent, to 774.57, the Nasdaq Composite climbed 86.63 to 3,860.66 and the Dow Jones industrial average lost 154.19 to 10,733.91.

A number of leaders which have suffered through steep sell offs continued to gain ground. They included Broadcom Corp. (BRCM), up 1-5/8 to 172-3/8, Broadvision Inc. (BVSN), up 3-15/16 to 43-15/16, Doubleclick Inc. (DCLK), jumped 6-1/8 to 75-7/8 and Exodus Communications (EXDS) jumped 14-1/2 to 88-7/16.

Also climbing were Lycos Inc. (LCOS), up 5-1/4 to 46-1/2, Network Solutions Inc. (NSOL), up 12-1/16 to 148 and RealNetworks Inc. (RNWK) gained 5-1/4 to 47-5/8.

About.com Inc. (BOUT) jumped 4-13/16 to 34-5/16. The collection of Internet sites on a variety of topics, reported a first-quarter loss of 44 cents a share, 14 cents better than expected.

Yahoo! Inc. (YHOO) ended up 5-5/16 to 130-1/4. Media Metrix said the Web directory gained more new visitors over the past 12 months than any other Web property. The number of visitors to Yahoo!’s network jumped by more than 17 million.

Verio Inc. (VRIO) had jumped 6-3/4 to 35-3/4. The company, which provides Internet access and Web hosting to businesses, said sales grew 11 percent in its latest quarter. Revenue from Web hosting and other business-oriented services jumped 16 percent.

VerticalNet Inc. (VERT) gained 8-9/16 to 37-9/16. CS First Boston initiated coverage with a “strong buy,” setting a target price of $110-$120 over the next 12 months.

The firm also initiated Freemarkets Inc. (FMKT) with a “buy” and a six to 12-month target of $85-$90. Shares ended down 1-1/2 to 72-3/16

E-commerce marketplace operator Ventro Corp. (VNTR) was also initiated with a “buy” and a 12-month target of $45. Shares closed up 7/8 to 27-1/2

Losers included MP3.com Inc. (MPPP), which plunged 4-5/8 to 7 after a federal court ruled Friday the company violated copyright law with the creation of its database in which users can store music and then access it via any computer connected to the Internet. At the heart of the dispute was Beam-It, software which allows users to listen to CDs over the Internet.

Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) went in and out of positive territory Friday, lost 1/16 to 69-3/4 ahead of a ruling in the antitrust case filed against it by the federal government and 19 states.

Online grocer Peapod (PPOD) fell 3/16 to 3 after a Chicago shareholder sued the company. Vu Nguyen claims the company knew it would need additional cash to continue operations. The company’s stock took a dive after former chief Bill Malloy resigned. His resignation led the withdrawl of $120 million in financing. Dutch grocery giant Royal Ahold purchased a controlling stake in the firm earlier this month for $73 million.


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