USAI Expands Its Empire

A week after wowing Wall Street with better than expected results, USA Interactive announced plans to expand its online empire into financial services.

Lending Tree soared 41% on USAI’s plans to acquire the online lender. USAI fell 2.5% on the news.

The broader market pulled back ahead of tomorrow’s Federal Reserve meeting and earnings report from Cisco .

The Nasdaq climbed 1 to 1504, the S&P 500 slipped 3 to 926, and the Dow fell 51 to 8531. Volume declined to 1.47 billion shares on the NYSE, but rose to 1.92 billion on the Nasdaq. Advancers led 18-14 on the NYSE, and 17-13 on the Nasdaq. Upside volume was 55% on the NYSE, and 66% on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 239-3 on the NYSE, but were unavailable on the Nasdaq.

After the close, WebMD fell on mixed results and a new CEO. Wireless Facilities and LookSmart beat estimates, but JD Edwards warned.

During the day, Apple surged 11% on strong online music sales.

RealNetworks soared 12% on a wireless offering.

Cisco rose 0.8% as it finalized its storage strategy.

Microsoft lost 1% ahead of a preview of the next Windows operating system.

IBM , down 1.2%, plans a mobile infrastructure announcement tomorrow.

AOL fell 0.5% despite a marketing deal with Boeing.

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