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F5 Networks forecasts adjusted profit above estimates

(Reuters) - Network gear maker F5 Networks Inc reported lower-than-expected quarterly results on a slowdown in federal sales, but forecast second-quarter adjusted profit above analysts' estimates.

The company on Wednesday forecast adjusted earnings of between $1.21 and $1.24 per share for the quarter ending March 31.

Analysts on average were expecting $1.20 per share in earnings, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Net income rose to $69.5 million, or 88 cents per share, for the first quarter from $66.5 million, or 83 cents per share, a year earlier.

The company, which counts Cisco Systems Inc , Juniper Networks Inc and Riverbed Technology Inc as rivals, earned $1.14 per share, excluding items.

Revenue for the quarter rose 13 percent to $365.5 million.

"During the first quarter, strong sales to North American enterprises and service providers were offset by a substantial slowdown in U.S. Federal sales," Chief Executive John McAdam said.

Analysts expected earnings of $1.15 per share on revenue of $366.7 million.

F5 shares were up 5 percent at $104 in extended trading. They closed at $98.81 on the Nasdaq on Wednesday.

(Reporting by Sruthi Ramakrishnan in Bangalore; Editing by Joyjeet Das)

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