Software company

CA

(CA) - Get Report

said earnings remained flat in the fourth quarter, helped by tighter expense controls.

Its shares declined in after-market trading, after closing down 1.3% to $17.32, as the company said it is assuming a downturn will continue into at least the early part of fiscal 2010.

During the quarter, income stayed steady at $72 million, or 14 cents a share, from $71 million, or 14 cents, in the year-ago period.

Excluding one-time items, the company, which makes software that helps manage large computer networks, would have earned 31 cents a share, beating analysts' target of 26 cents.

Revenue fell slightly by 4.6% to $1.04 billion from $1.09 billion last year.

Despite a hesitant outlook, CA said it is still making significant investments in new products.

"We can't predict when the recovery will begin, but we strongly believe technology will lead the way. Overall, I feel good about where we are and where we are heading," CEO John Swainson said in a statement.

Looking forward, the company forecasts earnings in the range of $1.51 to $1.61a share.

On Tuesday, rival

BMC Software

(BMC)

said earnings declined 14% on one-time charges and a higher tax rate.

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