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THQ's Shares Fizzle on Low Forecast

The company's profit outlook disappoints.

Updated from 11:02 a.m. EDT

Shares of



slipped Wednesday after the video-games publisher narrowed its loss for the first quarter but said second-quarter profit will come in below forecasts.

THQ said it lost $9.3 million, or 14 cents a share, in the first quarter, compared with a loss of $12.1 million, or 19 cents a share, a year earlier.

Sales fell to $104.5 million from $138.8 million a year earlier.

Analysts polled by Thomson Financial were expecting revenue of $112.7 million and a loss of 25 cents a share.

Shares of THQ were down $1.52, or 5.3%, to $27.24 in recent trading.

THQ said it sold more than one million of


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video games in North America since its release on June 26.

The company said it plans to release 11 titles for



Wii console in fiscal 2008, twice as many as it did last year.

THQ also plans to ship more than 1 million games each in fiscal 2008 of its five original titles,

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Nearly one-third of the company's revenue this year is expected to come from owned intellectual properties, instead of licensed games. Approximately 40% to 50% of its revenue will be from the latest generation of consoles, about 20% to 25% is likely to come from sales for



PlayStation 2 system and 25% to 30% will be sales on handheld systems.

For the second quarter, THQ said it expects revenue of about $240 million and EPS of 10 cents a share, excluding a stock-based compensation expense of 7 cents a share.

Analysts were expecting revenue of $236.5 million and earnings of 21 cents a share.

For the full fiscal year, THQ reaffirmed its guidance and said it expects revenue in the range of $1.12 billion to $1.15 billion and earnings in the range of $1.34 to $1.44 a share. This excludes stock-based compensation expense of 23 cents a share.

Analysts are expecting revenue of $1.14 billion and earnings of $1.40 a share.

THQ also projected hardware sales this year in North America. It expects sales of 4.5 million to 5 million



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Xbox 360s, 6 million to 6.5 million of Wiis, and 3 million to 3.5 million PlayStation 3s.

Sony's older console, PlayStation 2, could sell between 3 million to 3.5 million consoles, estimates THQ.