US SMALL/MIDCAPS-Stocks advance on earnings, positive data

NEW YORK, April 14 Wed Apr 14, 2010 4:28pm EDT

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NEW YORK, April 14 (Reuters) - Intel Corp wasn't the only semiconductor company to post strong results on Wednesday, with its pint-sized brethren also reporting vigorous earnings that lift mid- and smallcap stocks.

Chip-assembly equipment maker Kulicke & Soffa Industries Inc (KLIC.O) shares shot up 19.7 percent to $9.41 after it beat revenue estimates and forecast third-quarter revenue above expectations. For details see [ID:nSGE63C0K6]

Linear Technology Corp's (LLTC.O) third-quarter results beat market estimates and the chipmaker said it expects strong sales growth in the fourth quarter, helping the shares rise 5.3 percent to $31.23.

"Folks are stepping up and buying some of these smaller stocks that have good earnings," said Gary Bradshaw, portfolio manager at Hodges Capital Management in Dallas.

"We're seeing good earnings in the big stocks, and that's translating into people feeling much more comfortable about risky assets."

Networking and communications equipment provider Adtran Inc (ADTN.O) rose 7.5 percent to $29.36 after it forecast a rise in second-quarter revenue a day after posting better-than-expected quarterly results.

Shares of Hot Topic Inc HOTT.O rose 13 percent to $9.58 as the teen apparel retailer said sales at its core businesses are picking up and it expected strong performance at its Torrid division. For details see [ID:nSGE63D0D8].

Retailers also got a boost from data that showed U.S. retail sales rose 1.6 percent in March, beating expectations for a 1.2 percent increase. Consumer prices rose 0.1 percent, matching expectations, according to a separate report. [ID:nN14374789].

Women's apparel retailer AnnTaylor Stores Corp (ANN.N) jumped 8.3 percent to $22.94 and the S&P midcap specialty retail industry index .4GSPSPR gained 3.2 percent.

The S&P MidCap 400 index .MID rose 1.5 percent while the S&P SmallCap 600 index .SML advanced 2.1 percent. In comparison, the benchmark S&P 500 .SPX gained 1.1 percent.

(Editing by Andrew Hay)

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