SAN FRANCISCO -- Lessened inflation concerns following a benign Consumer Price Index, combined with a strong earnings report from Oracle (ORCL) - Get Oracle Corporation Report late Tuesday, have put stocks in the technology sector on solid footing early on.
Internet stocks were hammered following last month's strong CPI report, on concerns that higher interest rates would
punish stocks with high valuations. And while interest rates have dropped early today, the Treasury market remains focused on
speech on Thursday and the Fed's policy-making meeting later this month. In early trading,
TheStreet.com Internet Sector
index was up 25.90, or 5%, at 529.98.
Online brokerages have seen some relief following today's soft CPI number.
was up 2 1/2, or 8%, at 34 1/2, while
was up 5 1/2, or 8.5%, at 70 1/4.
Net bellwethers have also been on the rise.
was up 6 3/4, or 7%, at 101 1/2, while
was up 9 1/4, or 7%, at 134 1/2.
Also among Net stocks,
has continued to build on gains made Tuesday after it said it would offer a limited number of shares to shareholders of companies it takes public. CMGI was up 7 3/8, or 10%, at 84 3/8.
Oracle was the most active stock on the
early on. It was trading up 7 3/16, or 29%, at 32 5/16. The software maker was upgraded by a number of brokerage houses after reporting fourth-quarter earnings of 36 cents a share, topping the
estimate of 32 cents and above the year-ago 27 cents. The strong numbers came as a surprise since the company had expressed some caution about earnings during an analysts' meeting in
Credit Suisse First Boston
upped Oracle to strong buy from buy and raised its 12-month price target on the stock to 34 from 32 previously.
, which already had a strong buy rating on the stock, placed a "Single Best Idea" designation on Oracle. Analyst Doug Crook maintained his 12-month price target of 38.
Amazon Teams with Sotheby's
It has been tough going for
over the past week. The well-publicized crash of its site late last week punished the stock. Now comes news that
has teamed with
to create a high-end online auction service.
The site will sell luxury items such as rare coins and books, top-tier sports memorabilia and post-1945 collectibles, according to
The Wall Street Journal
. Amazon.com was trading up 6, or 6%, at 102 1/2 early on today. Sotheby's was up 3 3/4, or 11%, at 38 7/8.
eBay also was benefiting from the rally in the Net sector, adding 6 3/4, or 5%, at 142 1/4 early on.