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Is the market waiting for the

Federal Reserve's

announcement on interest rates, or has movement over the past two sessions represented a post-Fed rally, figuring the market can handle anything the Fed throws at it? Internet Sector

index was up 30.61, or 2.9%, at 1103.83 recently. Trading remained somewhat light and cautious in front of this afternoon's Fed decision, though a preannouncement rally in the 30-year bond may have indicated to some that it was OK to buy stocks. However, bonds were

rallying after the Treasury unexpectedly cut the size of one of two 30-year auctions. The rest of the Treasury market was weaker ahead of the Fed announcement.

Net bellwethers were leading the charge higher.

(AMZN) - Get, Inc. Report

was up 2 1/2, or 3.7%, at 69 15/16 ahead of its earnings report after the close.



was up 10 3/8, or 3.3%, at 327 3/4 on news of its

deal with



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And beleaguered

America Online


was up 3, or 5.4%, at 58 1/4. The Internet service provider said today that that its membership has surpassed 21 million. The company also indicated that AOL subscribers were averaging more than one hour online daily (63 minutes to be exact) for the first time. The company also said that on Christmas Day, more new members joined AOL than on any single day in its history, though the company would not say what that number was.

When AOL reported earnings Jan. 19, it indicated that membership at the end of 1999 was 20.5 million, meaning it has added half a million subscribers since the beginning of the year (apologies for the simple math). If you extrapolate the 500,000 January increase over three months, you would have a 1.5 million increase for the current quarter, which would be a sequential decline from the 1.8 million in the last quarter of last year.

Also, the

Associated Press

reported today that AOL was being sued on behalf of 8 million customers in a complaint that alleges that the latest version of its software interferes with existing Internet accounts with rival companies. In the story, an AOL spokesman claimed the lawsuit had "no basis in fact or law."


also was trading higher after the company reported that its active member base of its

Priceline WebHouse Club

name-your-own-price grocery service had grown by 50% in the past two weeks and had topped the 150,000 mark, or 2% of all households in the New York area. The company claimed that its new commercials with

Star Trek

star William Shatner increased awareness for the service. It was up 2, or 3.5%, at 59 1/4.