SAN FRANCISCO -- The stock market is on the defensive today, although the tech sector is only marginally lower.
The Internet sector has been mixed in trading thus far today, with
among the most active issues on the
. There are rumors circulating that the company will enter the online-auction business, though one analyst contacted by
said he would be surprised if the company added such a service. Company officials could not be reached for comment. Shares of Amazon were lately up 4 3/4, or 3%, to 144 5/8.
The Internet IPO of the day is
(ABTL:Nasdaq), which was priced Thursday at 23, a level much higher than anticipated. Autobytel.com, which has yet to begin trading, follows
, which went public on Tuesday. Autoweb was priced initially at 14, but it traded as high as 50 on Wednesday. Shares of Autoweb were lately trading up 2 5/16, or 7%, to 35 11/16. Both companies help connect car buyers with sellers through the Internet.
The biggest point gainer on the Nasdaq early on has been
, which has climbed 16 9/16, or 17%, to 115 so far today. The stock was up 13% on Thursday after the company resolved a dispute with
over access technology.
Also among the leading point gainers on the Nasdaq is
, a small-business investment company that
wrote about on Thursday. Winfield was recently up 3 13/16, or 17%, to 22 3/8.
are on the rise after
upgraded the stock to strong buy from outperform. Lexmark, which develops laser and inkjet printers, was trading up 5 3/8, or 6%, to 100.