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Components maker Read-Rite expects jump in profit

Shares of the disk-drive components maker rally after the company says its first-quarter sales and earnings will top analysts' estimates.

    Read-Rite shares rallied Thursday, after the disk-drive components maker said its first-quarter sales and earnings will top analysts' estimates.

    Shares closed regular trading up $1.47, or 32 percent, to $5.97.

    Company executives told investors to expect sales of more than $189 million in the quarter, a 30 percent improvement from the fourth quarter.

    Read-Rite also said it would return to profitability in the quarter and exceed the First Call consensus profit estimate of 2 cents a share.

    "We are excited by this financial performance, and we are hopeful it will continue as the company strives to gain additional market share during the coming year," CEO Alan Lowe said in a release.

    Analysts were projecting first-quarter sales in the neighborhood of $172 million.

    Last quarter, Read-Rite hurdled past analysts' estimates when it posted a loss of $16.1 million, or 25 cents a share, on sales of $146 million.

    Three of the six analysts following the stock rate it either a "buy" or "strong buy."

    First Call predicts it will earn 22 cents a share in the fiscal year.