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Earnings and Outlook Roundup

Oracle's profit eases concern over industry

December 20, 2007|From the Associated Press

Oracle Corp. fared better than analysts anticipated in its second quarter, easing worries that the sagging U.S. economy would curtail corporate spending on technology and drag down the business software maker.

The Redwood Shores, Calif.-based company earned $1.3 billion, or 25 cents a share, in the three months ended Nov. 30, a 35% increase from $967 million, or 18 cents a share, in the same quarter last year.

If not for stock option expenses and the costs of recent acquisitions, Oracle said it would have earned 31 cents a share -- 4 cents above the average estimate of analysts surveyed by Thomson Financial.

Revenue totaled $5.31 billion, a 28% improvement from $4.16 billion. Analysts, on average, had projected sales of $5.04 billion. Even more important to Wall Street, sales of software licenses climbed 38% to $1.67 billion. Analysts had predicted gains in the 20% range. Software sales are closely watched because new licenses establish a pipeline for future revenue from product upgrades and maintenance.

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