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Agilent meets 2Q forecasts

Agilent Technologies (NYSE: A) met analyst estimates in the second quarter.

After market close Tuesday, the maker of test equipment, semiconductor and optical components reported fiscal second quarter earnings of $150 million, or 32 cents per share, excluding one-time investment gains. That was in line with the prediction of First Call's analyst survey.

Including $16 million in non-recurring gains from equity sales, Agilent earned $166 million, or 36 cents per share.

Second quarter revenue increased 24 percent year-over-year to $2.5 billion. About 75 percent of that came from communications and electronics fields, the company said.

The company expects slightly higher revenue growth than it previously predicted. Agilent now sees fiscal 2000 revenue of $10.3 billion, up from its previously stated goal of about $10 billion. Net earnings should be more than 6 percent of revenue, CFO Bob Walker said. Agilent is targeting 15 percent revenue growth in fiscal 2001, with net margin of 8 percent, he added.

Total orders in the second quarter rose to $3 billion, up 38 percent from the year-ago period.

"We're pleased with the continuing strong orders, and we're executing plans to ramp our shipments by addressing capacity constraints and ongoing parts shortages," Walker said. "Our ability to meet the strong demand is improving and continues to be our top priority."

Shares of Agilent rose 4 5/16 to 92 1/2 in Tuesday's regular trading, prior to the earnings report. >