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EBay rises thanks to strong holiday weekend sales

NEW YORK (AP) -- EBay's stock climbed Monday, thanks to strong sales growth over the holiday weekend.

THE ANALYSIS: Stifel Nicolaus analyst Jordan Rohan said in a client note that the online auction site's sales picked up markedly, with sales up 26 percent from a year ago on Thanksgiving, 39 percent on Black Friday and 28 percent on Saturday. That compares with a sales increase of 13 percent during November's third week. The analyst said that eBay's Friday and Saturday performances also topped Amazon.com, which reported 35 percent growth on Friday and a 24 percent increase on Saturday.

Rohan said that eBay Inc. may have benefited from a shortage of popular electronics at some of the brick-and-mortar stores, as many of the items were available for resale on eBay.

The analyst maintained a "Buy" rating and $63 price target.

BACKGROUND: The holiday selling season is critical for retailers, as the combined months of November and December can account for up to 40 percent of retailers' annual revenue.

SHARE ACTION: Up $1.93, or 3.8 percent, to $52.45 in morning trading. Year to date, the shares are nearly flat.