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Oracle posts lower profits, revenue up 6 percent

Company reports fiscal second-quarter results that saw revenue climbing 6 percent, but net income shrinking.

Oracle reported Thursday a 6 percent rise in fiscal second-quarter revenue over last year, fueled by growth in software sales and its support and maintenance business.

Net income for the quarter, however, declined 1 percent to $1.3 billion, or 25 cents a share, for the period ending November 30, compared with the previous year. Excluding special items, Oracle posted non-GAAP net income of $1.7 billion, or 34 cents a share. That was below Oracle's September forecast of 35 cents to 36 cents a share.

Oracle was up less than 1 percent in after-hours trading to $16.70 a share. Investors may have seen some encouragement in its growth in software sales.

The company, which had previously issued a forecast of a 2 percent to 12 percent rise in new software sales, posted an 8 percent increase to $4.5 billion in the quarter.

Another growth area running counter to the downturn in the economy included its steady-as-she-goes support and maintenance revenue, which rose 14 percent to $2.9 billion.

But new software license revenue, a metric that investors tend to keep a close eye on as a means to gauge future growth for the company, fell 3 percent to $1.6 billion. Oracle's services revenue also fell, slipping 2 percent to $1.1 billion.