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Yahoo hits new 52-week high

Shares of portal heavyweight Yahoo climb to touch 448, a 52-week high, on reports that e-commerce sites saw strong holiday sales.

Shares of portal heavyweight Yahoo climbed higher today to touch 448, a new 52-week high, buoyed by reports that e-commerce sites saw strong holiday sales.

Safa Rashtchy, a financial analyst at U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray, said Yahoo, along with other broader tech stocks, is getting a positive lift from e-commerce sites that have reported strong online sales numbers as the holiday shopping season comes to an end.

"This is a very good quarter for e-commerce [stocks], and it's fueling the interest of retail investors and day traders," said Rashtchy. She added that Yahoo is enjoying a strong quarter and is poised to beat Wall Street estimates significantly again when the company reports quarterly earnings on Jan. 11.

Yahoo announced late yesterday that it reached record order volume on its Yahoo Shopping site for the period between Nov. 25 and Dec. 25. During this period, orders to Yahoo Shopping rose more than 385 percent over the same period a year earlier. In addition, orders for the 30 days leading up to and through Christmas Day rose more than 110 percent over the 30 days leading up to and through Thanksgiving Day, the company said in a statement.

The Internet giant saw its stock touch 448 in morning trading, surpassing its 52-week high of 428, which was set last week. But it dropped back to post a gain of 12.38, closing at 416.06.

Analysts at Argus Research reiterated their "buy" rating on the company's stock and upped their 12-month price target on Yahoo to $550 from $385 a share.

Yesterday, the tech-heavy Nasdaq composite index, which Yahoo trades under, closed above 4,000, gaining a record-breaking 84 percent for the year. The Nasdaq gained 69.35 to close at 4,041.46 yesterday. It has set 60 records this year.