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The9 (NCTY) surged 13% late Wednesday after the Shanghai-based online gamer posted a bigger-than-expected fourth-quarter profit.

Earnings rose to $8.5 million, or 35 cents an American depositary share, from $4.7 million, or 19 cents a share, in the third quarter. Revenue rose 15% sequentially to $26.3 million. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Financial were looking for a 24-cent profit on sales of $25 million.

"The fourth quarter of 2005 was once again a good quarter for our operation of Blizzard Entertainment's WoW in China," said CEO Jun Zhu. "In the fourth quarter, we attained peak and average concurrent WoW users of approximately 530,000 and 270,000, respectively. As of Dec. 31, 2005, approximately 3.3 million paid accounts have been activated."

Late Wednesday, The9 rose $2.76 to $23.66.