Oracle Hits the Mark

Oracle reported quarterly results late Monday that were largely in line with Wall Street expectations.

Oracle’s sales grew 26% to $4.16 billion, and earnings rose 18% to 22 cents a share, both matching estimates.

Software sales rose 23% to $3.2 billion, with database and middleware new license sales up 9% and applications new license sales up 28%. Retail software new license sales more than tripled. Services revenues grew 41% to $949 million.

“We continue to gain market share in applications from SAP, in middleware from BEA, and in database from IBM,” Oracle president Charles Phillips said in a statement. “In Q2, our middleware new license growth was exceptionally strong. We expect to pass BEA in total middleware new license sales later this year.”

Still, with the stock up 40% this year and analysts cautious about the company’s database business, Oracle shares shed 2% in late trading. The company said some contracts that didn’t close by quarter’s end are expected to close soon.

The broader market fell Monday ahead of wholesale inflation data due out Tuesday morning. Technology shares led the way lower.

Google fell 3.6% on a cautious article in the Wall Street Journal, and Apple continued to face selling pressure.

Embarcadero tumbled after a buyout deal fell through.

The Nasdaq fell 21 to 2435, the S&P 500 lost 5 to 1422, and the Dow slipped 4 to 12,441. Volume fell to 2.57 billion shares on the NYSE, and 1.96 billion on the Nasdaq. Decliners led 21-11 on the NYSE, and 21-9 on the Nasdaq. Downside volume was 62% on the NYSE, and 72% on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 235-24 on the NYSE, and 141-48 on the Nasdaq.

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