Amazon Adds Stake in Online Grocer to Its Shopping Cart

The move follows Amazon.com's recent stake another online business, drugstore.com.
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SAN FRANCISCO -- Buy, buy, buy! No, the Fed decision isn't in, and we're certainly not predicting a rally. Rather, "buy, buy, buy" may be more of a rallying cry for a couple of tech companies that have bought out or purchased a portion of other companies.

Amazon.com's

(AMZN) - Get Report

shopping spree continued today with reports that the online retailer purchased a 35% stake in

homegrocer.com

, in a deal valued at $42.5 million. Shares of Amazon.com were down 4, or 3%, at 133 5/8 in early trading.

Amazon.com also recently purchased a stake in

drugstore.com

, and another online drugstore,

Soma.com

, was snapped up by

CVS

(CVS) - Get Report

on

Monday.

In other Amazon news, both online units from

Barnes & Noble

(BKS) - Get Report

and

Borders

(BGP)

said they will match Amazon.com's latest discount plan for books on the

The New York Times

bestseller list. The online retailer said yesterday that it would offer would offer 50% off every book on the list, consisting of hardcover and paperback titles in fiction, nonfiction and advice/how-to/miscellaneous, or at least 68 titles.

There has been some speculation lately that Amazon made the announcement to try to bump the upcoming

barnesandnoble.com

IPO out of the investor spotlight.

ARIS

(ARSC)

, a provider of international IT consulting, training and software, has reached an agreement to acquire

fine.com

(FDOT)

, which provides strategic Internet consulting and development services. The deal is for $12.25 million, or approximately $4.55 per share in ARIS stock or a combination of stock and cash. fine.com was up 1 27/32, or 82%, at 4 3/32 in early trading.

Today's also a big day for quarterly results. Both

Dell

(DELL) - Get Report

and

Lycos

(LCOS)

report after the close of trading today, as does

Applied Materials

(AMAT) - Get Report

.

The

First Call

consensus estimate looks for Dell to

post first-quarter earnings of 16 cents a share. Shares of the company edged up 3/4, or 2%, to 44 in early action.

Lycos is expected to report a third-quarter loss of 3 cents a share, according to First Call. It was lately up 2 3/16, or 2%, at 110 11/16.

Applied Materials, which is expected to

record second-quarter earnings of 27 cents a share, was up 5/8, or 1%, at 63 7/8.

These earnings reports will arrive on the heels of stellar

numbers from

Hewlett-Packard

(HWP)

after the close on Monday. For its second quarter, H-P logged earnings of $918 million, or 88 cents a share, a 34% increase in profits over its year-ago quarter. Shares of H-P were up 4 5/8, or 5%, at 93 3/8 early in today's session.

Shares of

Broadcom

(BRCM)

were firmer after

Morgan Stanley Dean Witter

analyst Mark Edelstone raised his price target on the stock to 120 from 95. Broadcom jumped 6 1/2, or 7%, to 97 1/4 on the change.

Coming to a Theater Near You

Browser wars continue with

Netscape

, a subsidiary of

America Online

(AOL)

, releasing its new Communicator 4.6 today. Netscape says the software, which can be downloaded for free via Netscape Netcenter, has undergone "speed enhancements" that help it outperform Microsoft's IE5 in page loading from the top 100 Internet sites over a modem. The browser also includes

RealNetworks'

(RNWK) - Get Report

RealPlayer G2 for streaming video and audio over the Internet.