A new Internet index is on the way, with the powerful

Morgan Stanley Dean Witter

(MWD)

name behind it.

The index will be published on the

American Stock Exchange

beginning today under the ticker symbol MOX. Options on the index will begin trading by April 10.

The Net sector was helped by the announcement of the MOX.

TheStreet.com Internet Sector

index was up 39.02, or 3.1%, at 1292.19 in morning trading.

TheStreet.com New Tech 30

was up 18.62, or 2.3%, at 840.86. The Nasdaq was up 109.21, or 2.2%, at 5049.82. Check out

James Cramer's

take on

Business Week

columnist Gene Marcial's picks this week in an earlier

piece.

The MOX will be initially made up of 28 high market-capitalization Internet stocks drawn from nine Net subsectors: infrastructure services, infrastructure, consulting/services, portals, vertical portals, commerce, Internet/business-to-business or B2B software, B2B commerce and multisector Net companies. Morgan Stanley said the number and types of companies in the MOX will change as Net-related businesses evolve.

Among other stocks in the news,

Yahoo!

(YHOO)

was up 5 15/16, or 3.1%, at 196 15/16, while

eBay

(EBAY) - Get Report

increased 23 7/16, or 10.5%, at 247. The

Financial Times

, which earlier this

month reported that talks between the two Net superpowers had fallen apart, today reported that merger talks had resumed.

On Thursday night, Yahoo! and eBay declined to comment, but people close to the two companies confirmed that merger talks had begun again, the

Financial Times

said. The two companies are also talking about a looser alliance, and people close to the companies warned it was far from certain that the talks would lead to any deal, according to the

Financial Times

.

Commerce One

(CMRC)

TheStreet Recommends

was up 11 3/4, or 5.7%, at 216 3/4. Commerce One is expected to provide the technology behind a B2B venture that will include the four largest aerospace and defense companies. The B2B venture will include

Boeing

(BA) - Get Report

,

Lockheed Martin

(LMT) - Get Report

,

Raytheon

(RTN.A)

and

BAE Systems

of Britain.

Amazon.com

(AMZN) - Get Report

was up 6 1/16, or 9%, at 73 3/4.

CNBC

reported Morgan Stanley Dean Witter analyst Mary Meeker had made positive comments about Amazon saying the current quarter will be strong and the stock will rebound.

CNBC

also reported that Meeker spoke positively about

homestore.com

(HOMS)

. It was up 10 5/8, or 30%, at 46 1/4.

Other analysts commented on several stocks.

U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray

wrote positively about

GoTo.com

(GOTO)

, indicating he expects to see a "solid upside" to the current estimates for the quarter. Piper Jaffray, which has not done underwriting for GoTo.com, is forecasting a 32-cents-a-share loss for GoTo.com vs. a 33-cent loss estimate from

First Call/Thomson Financial

. It was up 14, or 39%, at 50 1/8.

And

Bear Stearns

analyst Scott Ehrens was pounding the table on

About.com

(BOUT) - Get Report

, a company that Bear Stearns has done underwriting for. Ehrens wrote that after a meeting with About.com management, he "came away comfortable with the current state of business and enthused by the new opportunities" for the company. He noted that the Web site was being redesigned and the new site would be launched next month. He wrote that the stock was still the cheapest one of the top 20 sites with the most Web traffic, and if it was valued similarly to its peers, he came up with a price of 115. About.com was up 3 7/16, or 4.1%, at 86 15/16.