St. Jude Medical ( STJ) said third-quarter sales rose 28% from a year ago, and the company, which announced an acquisition over the weekend, slightly lifted its earnings guidance for the full year. The St. Paul, Minn., medical-devices maker said Monday that sales for the quarter climbed to $738 million from $578 million a year ago. St. Jude earned $168 million, or 44 cents a share, compared with $91 million, or 25 cents a share, last year. Excluding items, the company would have earned 40 cents a share, a penny ahead of Wall Street's estimates, vs. 31 cents in the prior year. St. Jude is projecting fourth-quarter earnings of 39 cents to 40 cents a share. Based on the results of the third quarter, the company raised its forecast for the full year to earnings of $1.52 to $1.53. Analysts surveyed by Thomson First Call were expecting 40 cents in the fourth quarter and $1.51 for the year. On Sunday, St. Jude disclosed plans to buy Advanced Neuromodulation Systems ( ANSI) for $61.25 a share,
giving the pact a value of roughly $1.3 billion. Before the acquisition news, St. Jude had been planning to release its quarterly results Wednesday. Shares of St. Jude were gaining 78 cents, or 1.7%, to $46.54.