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Goldman Ups Novellus Estimates

Goldman Sachs raised its estimate on Novellus Systems (NVLS).

Analyst James Covello says during a mid-quarter call, Novellus raised the $305 million to $325 million second-quarter revenue guidance to $325 million to $335 million, and upped the earnings per share estimate to 25 cents to 27 cents, vs. his 22 cents estimate and the Street's 21 cents estimate.

Covello raised his $1.00 fiscal 2004 (Oct.) earnings per share estimate to $1.10 on the higher-than-expected shipment flow-through model. He keeps his in-line rating, saying it's too late in the fundamental cycle to overweight the semi-equipment stocks.

For investors who must maintain some exposure to the group, he says Novellus' solid mid-quarter update will likely generate some near-term relative outperformance given its significant underperformance in 2003 and to date in 2004.

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