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Earnings Roundup

Oracle profit soars 27% on sales growth

June 26, 2008|From Times Wire Services

Oracle Corp. posted a 27% increase in fiscal fourth-quarter profit Wednesday and overtook IBM Corp. as the second-largest software maker.

Net income in the quarter ended May 31 rose to $2.04 billion, or 39 cents a share, from $1.6 billion, or 31 cents, a year earlier, Redwood City, Calif.-based Oracle said. Still, the company's first-quarter forecast signaled that growth might ebb, sending the shares down 3.4% in extended trading.

International sales and rebounding U.S. orders helped Oracle withstand a slowing economy last quarter. Chief Executive Larry Ellison also has spent more than $33.5 billion on acquisitions, adding business applications to its database software.

Excluding acquisition costs and some other expenses, profit rose to 47 cents a share last quarter, topping the average analyst estimate of 44 cents.

Sales climbed 24% to $7.24 billion. Including acquired companies, sales advanced to $7.28 billion in the quarter. That compares with a $6.88-billion average estimate.

For the current quarter, Oracle forecasts profit, excluding some items, of 26 cents to 27 cents a share. Revenue is expected to advance 18% to 20%, indicating sales of $5.42 billion to $5.51 billion. Analysts had estimated a profit of 27 cents a share on $5.37 billion in sales.

Oracle shares fell 76 cents to $21.79 in extended trading after closing at $22.55, up 32 cents.

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