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SAN FRANCISCO -- We'll take our good news where we can find it.

Shares of


(ALTR) - Get Altair Engineering Inc. Class A Report

received a small lift in after-hours trading Monday after the logic chipmaker lopped off a portion of its worst-case scenario for the first quarter.

Altera said it now expects first-quarter sales to fall 15% to 20% sequentially from the fourth quarter; it had previously expected sales to fall 15% to 25%.

The company said its improved outlook is "largely attributable to better than expected demand from OEMs providing equipment for Chinese 3G wireless networks."

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The good news largely ends there, said Altera. "Overall, the first-quarter sales outlook remains muted as a result of slowing global business conditions."

Shares of Altera, which were off 5% in the regular trading session, were up 2.7% in recent after-hours trading to $14.95. Rival


(XLNX) - Get Xilinx, Inc. (XLNX) Report

rose 1.3%.

Altera's stock has taken the six-month hit that

all semiconductor-related names have suffered

, but its 13% drop in 2009 looks relatively muted, as tech stocks have outperformed the broader market so far this year.