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Oracle snaps up software firm for $8.7 million

    Oracle Corp. (Nasdaq: ORCL) shares fell 1 1/2 to 57 15/16 Tuesday after announcing it will buy data management software company Carleton Corp. (Nasdaq: CARL) for $8.7 million.

    Carleton shares were off 17/64 to 2 9/32.

    Oracle said it will pay the Minnetonka, Minn.-based company about $2.45 a share in cash, once Carleton's shareholders approve the deal.

    Carleton's software, which helps improve the quality of information found in databases, will become part of Oracle Warehouse Builder, a framework which designs and generates data warehouses and e-business applications.

    In its latest quarter, Carleton lost $2.3 million, or 69 cents a share, on sales of $1.1 million.

    Oracle met analysts' estimates in its first quarter, earning $237 million, or 16 cents a share, on sales of $2 billion.

    However, some analysts were disappointed by its less-than-stellar revenue growth.

    Second quarter sales increased 13 percent to $2 billion from $1.7 billion in the year ago period, when Oracle earned $195 million, or 13 cents per share. But software license and other revenue increased just 9 percent year-over-year, less than the 14 percent growth predicted by analyst consensus.

    Oracle shares marched up to a 52-week high of 61 3/8 earlier this month after trading at a low of 20 1/8 in April.

    Twenty-nine of the 36 analysts tracking the stock rate it either a "buy" or "strong buy."

    First Call consensus expects Oracle to earn 22 cents a share in its second quarter and $1.06 a share in the fiscal year.