Bellwethers Ring Loudly for Tech Stocks

The stocks' gains have been fueled by CNet's strong earnings news.
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SAN FRANCISCO -- High-tech bellwethers are leading the turnaround in the

Nasdaq

after a mostly shaky week.

The major catalyst for the gains was a strong earnings report from

CNet

(CNET) - Get Report

, but the tech sector had been battered of late and may have been ready for a recovery.

Virtually every tech sector is firmer at midsession.

Intel

(INTC) - Get Report

was leading chip makers with a gain of 3 15/16 to 132 3/4. Following Wednesday's presentation at the

Goldman Sachs Technology Investment Symposium

,

Texas Instruments

(TXN) - Get Report

was up 6 3/8 to 94 around midsession.

Microsoft

(MSFT) - Get Report

was up 2 3/8 to 163, while

Oracle

(ORCL) - Get Report

increased 2 7/16 to 56 1/8.

Dell

(DELL) - Get Report

was leading the PC makers, lately up 4 1/8 to 101 1/8.

Net stocks also were showing strength after the recent selloff.

CMGI

(CMGI)

was up 11 7/16 to 103 1/2.

Yahoo!

(YHOO)

was up 11 3/8 to153 3/4, while

Amazon.com

(AMZN) - Get Report

increased 9 15/16 to 107 3/8 and

Infoseek

(SEEK)

climbed 7 7/16 to 61 7/16.

CBS Internet Lineup

A couple of firms with

CBS

(CBS) - Get Report

are among the day's winners.

Sportsline.com

(SPLN)

is up 4 3/8 after CBS announced it will increase its stake in the online sports service to 18% from 12.5%. CBS will provide more promotion for Sportsline in exchange for the stock.

And

Marketwatch.com

(MKTW)

, also a partner with CBS, increased 4 1/2 to 70 following release of earnings and the initiation of coverage from a number of firms that were underwriters in the company.

Donaldson Lufkin and Jenrette

,

BT Alex. Brown

and

Salomon Smith Barney

all put buy ratings on the stock. Marketwatch reported a loss of 47 cents a share in the fourth quarter of 1998 and a loss of $1.38 for the year.

IPO Fever -- Catch It

Vertical Net

(VERT)

has caught the IPO fever. Vertical Net, which provides online commerce for businesses, was priced at 16 Wednesday night and soared to 41 on its opening. It reached a high of 52 earlier today and was recently trading around 49.

Prodigy

(PRGY)

also has soared on its first day of trading. Prodigy was priced at 15 and earlier reached a high of 33. It was recently trading around 28 on unbelievable volume of 16 million shares. Note that there were 8 million shares of the company offered, though

Telefonos de Mexico

is entitled to 2 million of the shares.

EMC Makes a Case

Money managers are still raving about strong words from

EMC

(EMC)

at the

Goldman Sachs Technology Investment Symposium

. One buy-side source commented Thursday that the company made "a pretty convincing case that they'll grow 35% or better" and growth in the Internet is what will trigger demand for its corporate data storage equipment.

--

Kevin Petrie