*DM Stocks Join in Friday's Plunge
These companies and those that service them had suffered declines during the wild weeks preceding Friday's plunge, but the massive sell-off of April 14 -- which hit financial services firms the hardest -- just chipped away at DM stocks' fractured values.
Amazon.com, which had lost about 35 percent of its price in the previous two weeks, fell another 2.5 percent to close at $46.875, down from just over $70 at the start of the month. E-mail list marketer Netcreations was down more than 50 percent for April, closing at $22 after a 26.36-percent drop in Friday's trading. Internet computer reseller and cataloger Multiple Zones also was down more than 50 percent for the month, closing at $4 Friday after a single-day drop of nearly 30 percent.
Insight Enterprises, another direct reseller of computer products, actually was up slightly for the month at $30.813, despite an 11.8-percent drop in Friday's trading. Computer direct marketer Gateway held its own, closing at $51.50 and suffering a slide of less than 1 percent Friday, while DM stalwart Dell Computer Corp. lost almost 8 percent in Friday's trading to close at $47.625.
Catalog stocks were a mixed bag, with a few companies, such as Delia's Inc., up 3 percent to $3.25; Brookstone Inc., up 0.35 percent to $18.125; and Lillian Vernon, up about 2.5 percent to $10, all recording gains in Friday's down market. Lands' End Inc. didn't fare as well, however, with a drop of about 12.15 percent to $50.625, and J. Jill Group Inc. joined it on the downslide with a 7-percent decline to close at $4.125.
Among the service companies that lost value were Acxiom Corp., down 9.21 percent to $25.25; Harte-Hanks Inc., down 3.23 percent to $22.438; and InfoUSA, down 6.73 percent to $6.063.
Friday's decline, which followed weeks of jitters about the viability of some e-commerce companies and other high-tech concerns, was fueled by government figures indicating higher-than-expected inflation in March. That could translate to higher interest rates or more expensive borrowing.