Xilinx shares get a lift

Xilinx shares hustled up $6.50, or 8 percent, to $86.19 Thursday after Chase H&Q upgraded the programmable logic device maker from a "buy" rating to a "strong buy."

Analyst Sudeep Balain also bumped its 12-month price target to $105 a share from $85 a share and predicted it would top forecasts of 15 percent quarter-over-quarter growth in its second quarter.

Xilinx (Nasdaq: XLNX) shares soared up to a 52-week high of $98.31 in June after falling to a low of $31.88 last September.

In the first quarter, Xilinx beat the Street estimate by 2 cents a share when it posted a profit of $93.8 million, or 27 cents a share, on sales of $364.9 million.

A survey of analysts by First Call Corp. consensus expects it to earn 30 cents a share in the second quarter and $1.27 a share in the fiscal year.

Competitors Actel (Nasdaq: ACTL) and Altera (Nasdaq: ALTR) were enjoying solid gains as well Thursday, up $2.19 and $1.69 a share, respectively.

Twenty-two of the 24 analysts covering Xilinx rate it either a "buy" or "strong buy."