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Maxtor soars on 1Q profit forecast

Maxtor Corp. (Nasdaq: MXTR) gained 13 percent Thursday on a bullish outlook for its fiscal first quarter ending April 1.

Shares were up 1 1/2 to 13 5/16, and the stock was the second-most traded on the Nasdaq Thursday morning. Shares have been gaining since Business Week reported the stock could surge soon as the company unveils some new products.

Based on stronger demand and shipments of high capacity drives, Maxtor said net income is expected to be between 10 and 20 cents a share, the company said. First Call's consensus of 10 brokers had pegged the company for a loss of 27 cents a share in its first quarter. Revenue for the company's first quarter is expected to be flat or up slightly from the $691 million reported in its fourth quarter of fiscal 1999.

"Demand has been strong for our products so far this quarter, with greater than anticipated strength in the consumer PC, distribution, and retail channels,'' said president and CEO Mike Cannon in a statement. The company said it is also shipping a richer capacity mix this quarter, which is resulting in a higher average selling price than planned.

Maxtor's top competitors include Quantum (NYSE: HDD), Seagate (Nasdaq: SEG) and Western Digital (Nasdaq: WDC).