The cheery broader market propelled small-cap stocks higher Wednesday, and among the biggest winners was Pericom Semiconductor ( PSEM). Shares soared more than 34% after fiscal first-quarter income vaulted to $3.9 million, or 15 cents a share, from last year's 6 cents a share. That easily beats analysts' 11-cent per-share estimates, according to Thomson Financial. The San Jose, Calif., company also brought in $38.5 million in sales, a 24.8% rise from last year and about $4.4 million above consensus. Pericom shares were up $4.04 to $15.80. That helped boost both the Russell 2000, recently up 0.6% to about 821, and the S&P SmallCap 600, which was gaining 0.4% to roughly 427. Both trackers soared earlier before getting temporarily jerked down immediately following the Federal Reserve's
decision to cut its key fed funds rate by 25 basis points. Among other small-cap gainers, Miami's Answerthink ( ANSR) more than doubled its third-quarter earnings to 7 cents a share, beating Street expectations by 2 cents. Shares of the business- and technology-consulting firm ramped up $1, or 32.4%, to $4.09. And First Consulting Group ( FCGI), a consulting firm for the health-care industry, catapulted 27.3% after Computer Sciences ( CSC) agreed to take it out for $13 a share in cash. The $365 million deal should close during the first calendar quarter of next year.