Money for Nothing

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NEW YORK: Give credit -- and about $700 million -- for having perfect timing. Three weeks after canceling its IPO because of market doldrums, the chat-heavy Internet portal took one look into Wall Street's newly refilled capital pool and went public Friday -- and struck it rich. Priced at $9, the stock peaked at $97 before settling in at $63 for a payday of some $691 million in market capitalization -- a record for Internet upstarts.

Taking the plunge was a no-brainer. FORTUNE senior writer Andrew Serwer says Wednesday's IPO from EarthWeb practically screamed it: the Internet IPO feeding frenzy is back after two quiet months. Never mind that admits in its prospectus that it plans to lose money "for the foreseeable future," or that the site's audience -- web surfers looking to build their own home pages -- doesn't make advertisers drool. Gentlemen, start your startups.