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OCZ shares rise on hopes of improvements

NEW YORK (AP) -- Shares of OCZ Technology Group Inc. surged Wednesday after the maker of solid-state drives said it expects its profitability to improve in the coming quarters as it moves closer to releasing its past-due financial statements.

THE SPARK: For the fiscal fourth quarter, which ended on Feb. 28, OCZ projected revenue of between $65 million and $70 million. Analysts, on average, expect $89.3 million in revenue, according to FactSet.

But the company said it expects positive gross margins for the fourth quarter, which it pointed to as a sign that it is moving past its restructuring and restatements. It added that inventory levels also continue to improve.

THE BIG PICTURE: San Jose, Calif.-based OCZ said it still expects its revenue for each of the past-due quarters ended Aug. 31 and Nov. 30 to total between $65 million and $85 million. Analysts expect fiscal second-quarter revenue of $99 million and fiscal third-quarter revenue of $85.9 million.

OCZ said it has made substantial progress toward becoming current with its filings, noting that it and its auditors have added additional resources intended to speed up the process.

THE SHARES: Up 18 cents, or 15 percent, to $1.41 in afternoon trading, after peaking at $1.56 earlier in the session. Over the past 52 weeks, the shares have traded between $1.11 and $7.67.