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The Night Watch: Juniper Leads Networking Group Higher

The company tops estimates for the third quarter. Ciena, Nortel and Lucent are among the gainers.

Updated from 5:14 p.m. EDT

Juniper Networks

(JNPR) - Get Juniper Networks, Inc. (JNPR) Report

was the leading volume mover on Island and Instinet after the company posted third-quarter numbers that beat analysts' estimates.

Shares of Juniper climbed 21.8% to $20.26 on Instinet and rose 23% on Island.

The Sunnyvale, Calif., company earned $32.5 million, or 10 cents a share, excluding items. According to Thomson Financial/First Call, analysts were looking for quarterly earnings of 7 cents a share. Multex.com listed the consensus estimate at 9 cents. Juniper earned $60.3 million, or 17 cents a share, in the same quarter a year ago. In addition, the company's board approved a $200 million stock buyback spanning the next two years.

Juniper's news sparked a wave of buying of the networking group, as

Ciena

(CIEN) - Get Ciena Corporation Report

,

Foundry Networks

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,

Extreme Networks

(EXTR) - Get Extreme Networks, Inc. Report

,

Nortel

(NT)

,

Lucent

(LU)

,

Corning

(GLW) - Get Corning Inc Report

and

JDS Uniphase

(JDSU)

all traded in positive territory and made the Instinet most-active list.

Trading was extremely heavy in the after-hours on Thursday, with 11.5 million share changing hands in the first 50 minutes of the extended session.

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Sonus Networks

(SONS)

also spiked after the company reported a loss of $11.4 million, or 6 cents a share, in the third quarter, matching Wall Street's projections. The company lost 4 cents in the year-ago period. The company's revenue jumped to $40.3 million from $15.6 million a year ago. Shares of Sonus were up 20% to $4.15 on Island.

Electronics for Imaging

(EFII) - Get Electronics For Imaging, Inc. Report

ticked up after the company said it earned $14 million, or 25 cents a share, in the third quarter. The figures exclude amortization costs. On that basis, the company met analysts' expectations. The company also projected fourth-quarter revenue of $108 million to $113 million with earnings of 15 cents to 17 cents a share. The issue rose 1.2% to $17.31 on Island.

Computer Associates

(CA) - Get CA, Inc. Report

disclosed plans to cut about 900 jobs, or 5% of its workforce. The cuts are effective immediately and will be in all areas of the company, but will take place mostly in the North American offices. CA was quiet in the after-hours session.

Shares of

Network Associates

(NETA)

were up 11.1% to $20 on Instinet. The security software provider, saying it was "back" from earlier financial troubles, forecast sales of $217million to $232 million with earnings of 7 cents to 10 cents a share in the fourth quarter. In 2002, the company expects sales of $880 million to $920million and earnings of 35 cents to 40 cents.

Cree

(CREE) - Get Cree, Inc. Report

was off 4.5% to $18.50 recentlyon Island. The company said it earned 11 cents a share in the fiscal first quarter, excluding amortization, beating the consensus estimate by a penny. The company earned 17 cents a share a year ago.

Other tech companies were faring well in theextended session, as

Cisco

(CSCO) - Get Cisco Systems, Inc. Report

jumped4.8%, while

Intel

(INTC) - Get Intel Corporation (INTC) Report

rose1.6%.

Sun Microsystems

(SUNW) - Get Sunworks, Inc. Report

gained3%, and

Oracle

(ORCL) - Get Oracle Corporation Report

inchedup 0.9%.