NEW YORK (

TheStreet

) --

Yahoo!

(YHOO)

shares gained 1.04% to reach $16.07 before market open on Wednesday after the company announced that it is returning $3 billion to shareholders following the initial sale of its shares in

Alibaba

.

In a statement released on Tuesday, the Internet giant confirmed that it received approximately $7.6 billion from the sales.

The Sunnyvale, Calif.-based company received $6.3 billion in cash and $800 million in preferred shares of Alibaba in exchange for half of its 40% stake in the Chinese e-commerce company. Yahoo! also received a payment of $550 million for a technology and intellectual property license agreement. Net cash proceeds from the first stage of the repurchase agreement totaled about $4.3 billion.

"The completion of the first stage of the Alibaba share repurchase represents a significant milestone for both Alibaba and Yahoo!," said Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer, in a statement released on Tuesday. "The execution of the deal was excellent, and we are excited to announce its completion well within the six-month time frame we communicated. I look forward to continued partnership with Jack Ma and his team as they position Alibaba for future growth."

The $3 billion that Yahoo!'s returning to investors follows $646 million of share repurchases since the

deal

was announced earlier this year.

Yahoo! was also one of the most active premarket Nasdaq stocks on Wednesday on share volume of 185,173.

Facebook

(FB) - Get Facebook, Inc. Class A Report

was another gainer, rising 0.82% to $22.05 amid positive

reports

about the company's Facebook Exchange ad platform. The social networking phenomenon was another active premarket Nasdaq stock on share volume of 189,542.

Apple

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(AAPL) - Get Apple Inc. (AAPL) Report

shares, which hit an all-time high of $702.33 on Tuesday, dipped 0.19% to $700.6 in premarket trading on Wednesday.

Boosted by the recent

launch

of the new iPhone 5, Apple's stock closed above $700 for the first time on Tuesday.

Microsoft

(MSFT) - Get Microsoft Corporation (MSFT) Report

shares dipped 0.27% to $31.09 before market open, a day after after the company announced a

15% increase

in its quarterly dividend.

The software giant's latest dividend raise, however, was less than the

25% increase

it implemented last year, which may reflect the broader climate of macroeconomic uncertainty, particularly in the PC market.

--Written by James Rogers in New York.

Follow @jamesjrogers

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