NEW YORK (AP) _ DoubleClick Inc. and Abacus Direct Corp. today announced a $1 billion merger to create a combined online advertising and database marketing company.

DoubleClick, a seller of banner advertising on the Internet, will use Abacus' database of consumer catalog buying behavior to better target ads to specific consumers, the companies said today in a statement.

Abacus tracks more than 2 billion consumer catalog transactions from 1,100 merchandise catalogs.

Right now, DoubleClick can display ads based on the type of Web site an Internet user is visiting. By using Abacus' database, DoubleClick will be able to display an advertisement suited to that consumer's catalog buying habits as well.

The New York-based DoubleClick will issue 1.05 shares of common stock for each share of Abacus, based in Broomfield, Colo. The new company, which will retain the DoubleClick name, will be headquartered in New York.

The deal, which is subject to regulatory approval and approval by shareholders of both companies, is expected to be completed in the third quarter of this year.