SAN FRANCISCO -- Yahoo! (YHOO) gave the hordes famished for Internet earnings data some nourishing morsels that could portend a strong quarter for other Internet companies.
In typical fashion, the company bested consensus earnings estimates, reporting fiscal second-quarter pro forma earnings of 11 cents a share. The
consensus estimate called for earnings of 8 cents a share, with a whisper number of around 10 or 11 cents. (None of those numbers include amortization of intangible assets.)
Yahoo! also didn't disappoint analysts who expected the portal giant to report substantial revenue growth. Second-quarter revenue rose to $115.2 million, beating estimates of about $103 million and first-quarter revenue of $86 million. Yahoo! reported revenue of $41.2 million in the second quarter of last year. Neither the year-ago nor the first-quarter figure included the recent acquisition of
Average daily page views, a number that analysts follow to gauge Yahoo!'s popularity, amounted to 310 million in GeoCities-aided June, compared to 235 million per day in GeoCities-free March.
Ahead of the report, Yahoo! closed down 8 1/16 to close at 167 1/16. The stock has made a habit of running up in front of its earnings report, then selling off after, even when the company beats earnings estimates.
Weakness in Yahoo! during most of Wednesday's trading applied pressure on the Internet sector in general. Yahoo! is not only among the first of the Internet stocks to report earnings each quarter, it's still seen as a bellwether for the industry. Yahoo! closed down 8 1/16, or 5%, to 167 1/16, and
TheStreet.com Internet Sector
index ended the session down 11.5, or 2%, at 653.8.
A number of recent IPOs that have rallied sharply in recent days saw profit-taking Wednesday.
, which provides Net access management systems, closed down 8 1/8, or 5%, at 145 after gaining 18 points on Tuesday. Also,
, which traded as high as 74 3/8 after going public at 14 last week, closed down 6 3/4, or 11%, at 56 1/4. And
, which has been nothing short of a sensation since going public June 25, dropped 4 7/16, or 3%, to 135 1/16.
Bucking the trend was
, which closed up 3 7/16, or 3%, at 107 1/4. The Net portal said it had entered into an agreement with fiber-optic network builder
on a number of Internet-based initiatives, including the development of high-speed content to be deployed over RCN's network. RCN finished up 1 15/16, or 4%, at 45 15/16.
closed up after the online bookseller launched its online music store in an attempt to take on retailing giant
. barnesandnoble.com closed up 7/16, or 3%, at 17 11/16, while Amazon.com ended down 5, or 4%, at 121 7/8.
Net IPO madness railed on with the debut of
, a provider of customized music CD compilations over the Internet. The company, which had only $20,000 in revenue in the first quarter of 1999, was solid gold in its debut, closing up 71% from its offering price of 14, at 23 15/16.
And a recent IPO that was lambasted after closing below its opening price,
, went on the offensive today. Salon said its network users will be able to purchase tickets online to arts and cultural events through the
integrated ticketing service. It finished up 1 13/16, or 17%, at 12 3/4.