JDS Uniphase

(JDSU)

reported Wednesday that its earnings nearly tripled in its fourth fiscal quarter, exceeding Wall Street's estimates, as the leading fiber-optic equipment maker benefited from a 173% jump in sales.

JDS Uniphase said its income for the quarter, excluding merger-related charges, rose to $114 million, or 14 cents a diluted share, vs. a pro forma $41 million, or 6 cents a diluted share for the comparable period in 1999. The latest results beat the consensus Wall Street estimate of 12 cents a share, according to

First Call/Thomson Financial

.

San Jose, Calif.-based JDS Uniphase was formed in 1999 through the merger of

JDS Fitel

and

Uniphase

, and has made several acquisitions since then. The prior-year pro forma figures include results for those two companies, plus other acquired companies

Epitaxx

,

Sifam

,

Optical Coating Laboratory

,

Cronos Integrated Microsystems

and

Fujan Casix Laser

.

The results excluded income from

E-Tex Dynamics

, which was acquired on June 30, and earned a separately reported $23 million on sales of $123 million for the quarter.

Including the purchase of E-Tex and other merger-related costs, JDS Uniphase reported a loss of $419 million, or 54 cents a share for the quarter.

Net sales for the quarter rose to $524 million, compared with $192 million a year earlier. Sales also rose 33% vs. the fiscal third quarter's $395 million.

Earlier this month JDS Uniphase

agreed to purchase competitor

SDL

(SDLI)

for an all-stock deal valued at the time around $41 billion.

Following the news, shares of JDS Uniphase pulled back slightly. In after-hours trading, the stock recently fetched 133, a decline of 1 63/64, or 1.5%. In regular-hours trading, the stock finished higher 4 51/64, or 3.8% at 134 63/64.