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Rambus Rockets on FTC Speculation

Shares of the chipmaker rise more than 28% on hopes of a favorable FTC ruling in a patent dispute.


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shares soared more than 28% Thursday, after the company's appearance at a closely watched hearing with the Federal Trade Commission a day earlier.

Investors bid up the company's shares to $21.32 on hopes that the FTC takes a light hand when it decides what remedy to impose on Rambus for antitrust violations and unfair business practices.

In August, the FTC issued a 119-page opinion concluding that Rambus had

engaged in a course of deceptive conduct that allowed it to monopolize the market for computer memory.

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Rambus, based in Los Altos, Calif., designs and licenses technology related to computer memory.

According to the FTC's August opinion, Rambus took part in the standard-setting organization, known as JEDEC, without disclosing the fact that it had patents on many of the technologies it was pushing to be included as part of the standard.

Wednesday's hearing in Washington D.C., involved the remedy phase of the FTC's finding.

In a note to investors, American Technology Research analyst Jeff Schreiner said it appears unlikely that the commission will include DDR2 or DDR3 memory in its final remedy.

That would limit any remedies, which could include capping Rambus' royalty rates, to older types of memory like SDRAM and DDR.

"We see this as substantial because it's the current and future version of memory that would go unharmed," said Schreiber.

Shares of Rambus were up 28.1%, or $4.67, at $21.32 in late trading.