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Theglobe.com falls 26 percent on sales warning

    Theglobe.com was whacked out of orbit 26 percent Friday. Internet investors got some bad news late Thursday when theglobe.com Inc. (Nasdaq: TGLO) warned that its third-quarter sales will fall short of analysts' estimates.

    Shares were down 3 9/16 to 10 1/16 after company officials said it now expects sales of between $4.7 million to $4.9 million in the quarter, slightly below most analysts estimates of around $5.1 million.

    The online network, said development of globelists.com, a network of e-mail clubs based on user interest, and uPublish, a homepage and Web site builder, took longer than expected. It also announced plans to boost the two products by launching a $27 million marketing campaign to run from November through the fourth quarter of 2000.

    Of course, this shortfall will still represent a 200 percent improvement versus the year-ago quarter. And theglobe.com officials are quick to point out that it will meet analysts' earnings estimates.

    Loss estimates they must mean.

    First Call consensus expects it to lose 34 cents a share in the third quarter and $1.25 a share in the fiscal year.theglobe.com will report its third-quarter earnings on Nov. 3.

    The stock has steadily unraveled since it split 2-for-1 in May. After peaking at 48 1/2 in April, its shares fell to an all-time low of 9 3/4 in August.

    Last quarter, it lost $6.7 million, or 27 cents a share, on sales of $4.1 million.