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said first-quarter margins are trending toward the high end of its previous range due to better profitability in its 130-nanometer line of communication semiconductors.

The San Jose, Calif., company put second-quarter gross margin at 64%, up from the 63% to 64% range it gave when releasing fourth-quarter earnings on April 22. Xilinx reiterated its expectation for sequential sales growth of 5% to 8% in the June quarter, an increase that comes out to $424 million to $436 million.

Analysts are currently expecting the company to earn 28 cents a share on revenue of $432.3 million, according to Thomson First Call. Xilinx's update is similar to one released Tuesday night by rival


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, which said June quarter sales were tracking toward the high end of a 7% to 9% sequential range.

Xilinx also forecast combined inventory days in the second quarter to be roughly the same as in the March quarter.

The shares were up 20 cents, or 0.6%, to $36.55 on the Instinet premarket session.