Kara Swisher

Recent Posts by Kara Swisher

Web Stocks Catch a Break Today, Heading Up in Overall Stock Rally

Internet stocks got a much needed boost today, after the market rose to its highest levels in three months on solid earnings reports and less worry about the economic disaster in Europe.

The downhill-sliding of Facebook stopped again today, with a 3.9 percent rise to close at $21.92. While still off more than 42 percent since its May IPO, the social networking giant got itself back on the prettier side of $20.

Content portal AOL also had a 3.7 percent gain, likely due to news of a patent dispute settlement, to close at $33.83. It is up an impressive 124 percent for the year.

LinkedIn, one of the few Class of Web 2.0 winners, rose 2.8 percent to $111.55; the business network is up 77 percent for the year.

Better still: Zynga, which has been suffering badly of late, was up about 8.1 percent to close at $2.94 (the online gaming company is still down 69 percent year to date). The same was true of Groupon, another stock loser of late, with its shares rising more than 10 percent to $7.25, which is still down 65 percent for the year.

Also up strongly was recommendations site Yelp, which gained 8.7 percent to $25.43.

Also up smartly: Travel site Kayak, up 4.2 percent to $32.68; video service Brightcove, up almost 6 percent to $14.74; reservation site OpenTable, up 1.9 percent to $40.29; music streaming service Pandora, up 2.5 percent to $9.79; and collaboration software company Jive, up just over 2 percent to $19.11.

In contrast, Internet giant Yahoo gained less than a half of a percent in today’s trading, though it did finally remain above the $16 price barrier to close at $16.04. It is down a little more than a half of a percent for the year, despite the recent splashy hiring of new CEO Marissa Mayer.

Google, too, saw only a quarter percent rise, to $642.82. The search giant is also down a half of a percent for the year.

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I think the NSA has a job to do and we need the NSA. But as (physicist) Robert Oppenheimer said, “When you see something that is technically sweet, you go ahead and do it and argue about what to do about it only after you’ve had your technical success. That is the way it was with the atomic bomb.”

— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik