If Internet stocks were in rally mode on Monday with the
meeting a day away, why wouldn't they be rallying again today?
After all, nothing has really changed since Monday, except that the Fed's decision is now staring the market in the face. But it appears as if the mere sight of Fed Chairman
running across the street to the meeting -- and
, of course, focusing on his briefcase -- has given traders pause.
While the Fed is likely to announce an increase in the federal funds rate of 25 basis points around 2:15 EDT, sentiment is that the market has gone a long way to pricing in that rate hike and it is uncertain whether the Fed will go on an extended tightening cycle. And Net stocks weren't the only ones to rally in the face of the Fed, as the
Dow Jones Industrial Average
closed at a record high on Monday.
Net stocks were mixed early on today, though the sector had gone a long way toward erasing its early losses.
TheStreet.com Internet Sector
index was recently down 1.75, or 0.3%, at 569.96, rebounding from a low of 565.02 at the opening.
was trading slightly lower on news that the company sent new trading software to 40,000 of its best clients, according to
The Wall Street Journal
, and also plans to give them professional-style stock quotes later this year. The software was sent to Schwab customers with assets of at least $1 million, or those who make at least 48 trades a year. Schwab was down 3/8, or 1%, at 42 5/8 early on.
According to published reports, German media company
sold 7.2 million shares of
Aug. 19. Bertelsmann said it would use the money to further develop its own Internet business, which includes
. The joint venture between AOL and Bertelsmann launched its subscription-free Internet service in Britain today. AOL was flat at 99 in early trading.
The quiet period for
was over today, and that means underwriters for the company's stock offering can come out with their ratings.
reported that lead underwriter
Hambrecht & Quist
Deutsche Banc Alex. Brown
initiated coverage with buy ratings, while
began coverage with an attractive rating. Net2Phone, which allows users to place low-cost telephone calls over the Internet, also said it had entered into an agreement with
to offer its services to Compaq customers in Canada, Latin America, Japan and Asia-Pacific. Net2Phone was up 7 3/8, or 16%, at 54 1/2, while Compaq was off 1/16 at 24.
Also, shares of
were higher after the company agreed to give
Bank of America
a 5% interest in E-Loan in exchange for Bank of America's stake in
. The deal calls for E-Loan to buy CarFinance.com for 2.88 million shares of E-Loan. E-Loan said it expects the transaction to be completed sometime in September. E-Loan was up 4 3/16, or 18%, at 27 9/16.