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STOCKS TO WATCH: Alloy Online, Adobe, AOL, Fairchild Semi and Jabil Circuit

Expect the following technology stocks to be among Friday's most actively traded issues: Adobe Systems, Alloy Online, Fairchild Semiconductor and Jabil Circuit.

  • Adobe Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: ADBE)

    Adobe Systems will be on the move Friday after it flew past analysts' estimates in its first quarter, posting a profit of $64.6 million, or 51 cents a share, on record sales of $282.2 million.

    First Call consensus expected the software developer to earn 43 cents a share in the quarter.

    Its shares closed up 10 7/8, or 13 percent, to 94 7/16 ahead of the earnings report.

    The $282.2 million in sales marks a 24 percent improvement from the year-ago quarter when it earned $38.3 million, or 30 cents a share, on sales of $227 million.

    Ten of the 13 analysts tracking the stock maintain either a "buy" or "strong buy" recommendation.

    First Call consensus expects the San Jose, Calif. company to earn $1.90 a share in the fiscal year.

  • Alloy Online Inc. (Nasdaq: ALOY)

    Alloy Online should take off Friday after it posted a smaller-than-expected loss in its fourth quarter, losing $4 million, or 28 cents a share, on sales of $15.7 million.

    First Call consensus expected it to lose 30 cents a share this time around.

    Its shares closed up 1/2 to 18 1/4 ahead of the earnings report.

    The $15.7 million easily exceeded most analysts' estimate of around $11 million. It was also a staggering 346 percent improvement from the year-ago quarter when it lost $1 million, or 12 cents a share, on sales of $3.5 million.

    For the year, it lost $14.3 million, or $1.12 a share, on sales of $31.2 million compared to a loss of $6.4 million, or 75 cents a share, on sales of $10.2 million in fiscal 1999.

    Gross profit margins jumped to 58.5 percent, up from 51.1 percent in the year-ago quarter.

  • AOL Inc (NYSE:AOL)

    Bertelsmann AG said it will make an announcement on Friday concerning plans to sell its 50 percent in online service provider AOL Europe to AOL for around $7 billion.

    Bertelsmann's exit from AOL Europe had been expected after AOL said earlier this year it planned to merge with Time Warner Inc (NYSE: TWX).

    Under a new agreement Bertelsmann will be preferred partner for content and electronic commerce on AOL's online service. In return AOL will have access to Bertelsmann's marketing and distribution in Europe.

  • Fairchild Semiconductor International Inc. (NYSE: FCS)

    Fairchild looks to gain ground Friday after telling the Street it expects its first-quarter sales to improve 6 percent from the fourth quarter, or roughly double most analysts' projections.

    In a report on Jan. 25, the company said revenues for the seven months ended Dec. 26 were $786.2 million.

    In a statement, the company attributed its rising revenues to new product sales like its power, analog and interface components, and it added that much of its growth strategy is targeted at portable appliance product markets such as those for mobile phones, consumer appliances and mobile PCs.

    The company also said it expects quarterly revenues following the first quarter to rise 3 to 4 percent.

    Its shares closed off 9/16 to 31 7/8 Thursday.

  • Jabil Circuit Inc. (NYSE: JBL)

    Jabil Circuit met analysts' estimates in its second quarter, earning $33.9 million, or 37 cents a share, on record sales of $837.6 million. It also set a 2-for-1 stock split.

    First Call consensus expected the circuit board manufacturer to earn 37 cents a share in the quarter.

    Its shares closed up 5 15/16, or 8 percent, to 84 1/16 ahead of the earnings report.

    The $837.6 million in sales marks a stunning 50 percent jump from the year-ago quarter when it pocketed $22.3 million, or 27 cents a share, on sales of $558.7 million.

    Its shares moved up to a 52-week high of 90 7/8 earlier this month after falling to a low of 35 3/4 in August.

    Twenty-three of the 25 analysts tracking the stock maintain either a "buy" or "strong buy" recommendation.

    First Call consensus sees Jabil earning $1.57 a share in the fiscal year.