RIM shares surge on subscriber forecast

BlackBerry maker Research In Motion (RIM) sent its stock surging by raising its forecast for fourth-quarter subscriber additions, saying its smartphones were hot sellers over the holidays, an Associated Press report said.

The Associated Press report quoted the company as saying that it expects quarterly net subscriber account additions to be 15% to 20% above the 1.82 million it forecast in December, implying 2.09 million to 2.18 million additional subscribers.

The BlackBerry subscriber account base is expected to be about 14 million at the end of the company's fiscal fourth quarter on March 1, the report said.

Research in Motion shares climbed $8.78, or almost 9 %, to $106.69 in Nasdaq trading.

The company, which is casting its focus toward the consumer market after cornering the business community, reiterated that it expects quarterly earnings per share of $0.66 to $0.70 on revenue of $1.80 billion to $1.87 billion, the report added.

Analysts surveyed by Thomson Financial expect profit of $0.69 per share on revenue of $1.85 billion, the report said.

Research In Motion is due to report its fourth-quarter results on March 24.