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Progress Software rises on 3Q adj. profit results

NEW YORK (AP) -- Shares of Progress Software climbed more than 10 percent Thursday after its third-quarter adjusted earnings results topped Wall Street's expectations.

THE SPARK: Late Wednesday, Progress Software Corp. reported fiscal third-quarter earnings of 9 cents per share on revenue of $107.2 million.

Excluding stock-based compensation, restructuring costs and other items, earnings were 31 cents per share. Analysts surveyed by FactSet forecast earnings of 23 cents per share on revenue of $113 million.

THE ANALYSIS: Aaron Schwartz of Jefferies says that Progress Software's quarterly results are a step in the right direction. The Bedford, Mass., company announced earlier this year that it planned to cut its workforce by 10 percent to 15 percent, shed 10 product lines and reduce costs.

Schwartz said in a client note that Progress Software did not give any updates on the product line sales, but maintained its prior forecast for the process to be complete by the mid-to-end of 2013.

The analyst reaffirmed a "Hold" rating and lowered the company's price target to $23 from $25.

SHARE ACTION: Progress Software Corp.'s stock gained $1.93, or 10.1 percent, to $21.09 in morning trading. The shares have traded in a range of $16.71 to $24.76 over the last year. For the year to date, the stock is down 3 percent.