Mixed Nets

In a mixed day for Internet stocks, some of the sector's old names faltered, while others flourished.

Yahoo remained an enigma, closing down 11.81 at 341.19. It has slipped by around 110 points since last Monday, a day before reporting its earnings.

Though its numbers were strong, Yahoo typically sees profit-taking and selling by insiders immediately following its earnings reports. AOL also remained under pressure, closing down 2.50, or 4 percent, at 60.75. It has dropped around 23 percent since announcing its merger with Time Warner last week.

However, not all old Net was out of favor. Network Solutions raced up 42.56, or 18 percent, to 280.31 on news that the U.S. Supreme Court upheld a ruling that the fees the company charges for domain name registration and renewal were not unconstitutional and unauthorized taxes.

Also among the better performers was Beyond.com. It closed up 1.56, or 25 percent, at 7.94 on news of its selection as a reseller of Red Hat's Linux software and services. Red Hat did not have as much success, closing down 15.88, or 12 percent, at 116.38. Losses stemmed from news that the company had filed to sell 4 million shares in a secondary offering.

VerticalNet finished up 23.81, or 17 percent, at 163.50 after the company said that it was entering into a joint venture with Softbank to launch business-to-business vertical communities in Japan.

ShopNow.com showed it knows how to play the Internet game and the market. The company said early Tuesday it was going to make an announcement regarding a business-to-business product during the afternoon. The stock soared more than 50 percent to 25.94 on that announcement. By the time the company got around to saying it had launched a global business-to-business portal, profit takers had swooped in and the stock ended the day up only 3 at 20.

While b-to-b remains one of the Net sector's hot buzzwords, one stock is tumbling despite its status as a B2B play. FreeMarkets closed down 26.75, or 14 percent, at 171.25. The stock has been hit hard since General Motors said it was giving its Internet auction business to FreeMarkets competitor Commerce One. A number of lawsuits have been filed against FreeMarkets on behalf of investors, alleging that FreeMarkets concealed GM's signing of an agreement with Commerce One.

The Nasdaq rose 66.54 points to close at 4130.81, just below its all-time closing high of 4131.15. The Dow fell 162.26 to 11560.72.

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