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Markets rebound after Brazil scare

Stocks soar higher, rebounding sharply from their dizzying fall over the past four days, with MarketWatch.com leading the charge.

Stocks soared higher today, rebounding sharply from the dizzying fall over the past four days.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rallied to push 219.87 points higher, rising 2.41 percent to 9,340.8 as investors breathed a sigh of relief that Brazil was allowing its currency to float freely. After Brazil let its currency slide earlier in the week, stocks around the world tumbled as investors feared the Brazil economic crisis would spread and pose a threat to corporate profits. The Dow plunged 228 points yesterday, the biggest drop since October 1, on the turmoil in Brazil.

The Nasdaq Composite Index also leapt higher today, rising 71.39 points or 3.14 percent to 2,348.21.

"I think we've overreacted to the Brazilian problem," said Alfred Goldman, chief market strategist at A.G. Edwards.

The big Internet-related news of the day was MarketWatch.com's spectacular 473.53 percent rise on the first day of trading for the issue. The issue closed at 97.5. MarketWatch was priced at 17 per share yesterday, but soared as high as 130 today, raising $46.75 million for the company.

Another high jumper today was ImaginOn which rocketed more than 201 percent after the company announced it would release a "super-search engine" later in the month.

Strangely enough, ImaginOn was formed by a merger of California Pro Sports, a marketer and distributor of sporting goods-related products, and ImaginOn, a company in the development stage that makes business and consumer software for CD-ROM and network users.

ImaginOn is slated to release its WebZinger 6.00 software on January 29. The company said WebZinger can search and download information from the Web and is capable of delivering a multimedia report complete with text, pictures, video, and audio on any topic.

Also, seven of the ten most heavily traded issues today on the technology-heavy index were posting gains.

Intel rose 1.21 percent; Cisco Systems climbed 5.58 percent; MCI WorldCom jumped 5.72 percent, and telco equipment maker Ciena edged 1.34 percent higher.

On the big board, America Online climbed 1.47 percent, Compaq Computer surged 5.05 percent, and Cendant rose 6.09 percent.

Bloomberg contributed to this report.