IBM Gains on Earnings and Outlook

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Updated from 8:59 a.m. EDT

IBM

(IBM) - Get Report

was up 3.1% in midmorning, a day after it posted its first quarterly earnings decline in two years but said it believes it can match Wall Street's expectations for the coming quarter.

Big Blue said third-quarter earnings were 90 cents per share, down from $1.08 a year ago but above the Thomson Financial/First Call consensus estimate of 89 cents. IBM is one of the few technology companies that did not warn of an earnings shortfall after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

With revenue from its computer services and network computing businesses expected to hold steady, IBM said it believes it can meet analysts' expectations of earnings of $1.34 per share for the fourth quarter.

For the third-quarter, the company said services revenue rose 5 percent while software revenue increased 10 percent vs. the same period a year earlier. But hardware sales declined 21 percent, with personal computer revenue falling 29 percent.

Other major technology issues were higher in the wake of IBM's report. Tech bellwether

Sun Microsystems

(SUNW) - Get Report

was up 2%.