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Homestore offers stock option exchange

Online real estate company Homestore.com plans to offer employees a chance to exchange high-priced options as part of a new program, according to a regulatory document filed Friday. Under the program, employees can cancel stock options and receive new options at a certain strike price six months and one day after the cancellation date. Employees have until Aug. 23 to cancel their options.

Homestore is the latest company to offer to exchange or reprice employee options, following the lead of companies such as KnightRidder.com and Amazon.com. Once a dot-com darling, Homestore shares have fallen 97 percent over the last two years. The company recently was forced to restate earnings for 2000 and the first nine months of 2001.