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Netscape CEO ups stake by 6.2%

James Barksdale spends nearly $7.3 million to increase his holdings in the software maker, marking one of the most significant insider stock purchases of late.

Netscape chief executive James Barksdale has spent nearly $7.3 million to increase his holdings in the software maker by 6.2 percent, marking one of the most significant insider stock purchases of late.

Holding true to his earlier promise that he would buy more shares in the company, Barksdale purchased 300,000 shares at $24.27 a share on June 1, according to Federal Filings Business News.

That purchase brings his total holdings to nearly 5.1 million shares.

"This [purchase] represents a reversal in behavior patterns for all Netscape insiders and Barksdale," said Craig Columbus, an insider trading analyst for Disclosure. "This is [one of the first] insider buys through out the company in the last two years."

Netscape's stock has fallen from around 29 a share in early May to close at 24.1875 today, up 1.3750 over yesterday.

On May 29, during Netscape's annual shareholder meeting, Barksdale told investors that he planned to increase his stake in the company because he believed the stock was a good investment.

His move contrasts with that of five Netscape executives who more than three months ago filed to sell about 850,000 shares--during a period when the company's stock was trading near its 52-week low.