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Oracle (ORCL) issued a press release Thursday announcing that next week’s earnings report will be better than expected. But it was not so much that they beat, but how they beat expectations, that has investors excited.

New software license revenues increased 32% to $2.12 billion, exceeding previous guidance of 8% to 18% growth. Database technology license revenues grew 18%, while applications license revenues increased 83%. Organic applications license revenues, which exclude the Siebel and Retek acquisitions, increased 56%.

We analysts, being a cynical lot, were concerned that the major reason for Oracle’s recent acquisition spree was that its legacy database business could no longer grow. The 18 percent license growth in that segment lays those fears to rest, at least until next quarter. Furthermore, the 56 percent growth in applications (excluding recent acquisitions) shows that that segment is indeed the driver for future gains.

A slowing economy could put a damper on things, so it is too early to say for sure whether this is the turning point for Oracle shares. But if they can manage to string together two or three quarters that are even close to this performance, it no doubt will be.

ORCL 1-yr chart:

ORCL 1-yr chart

Source: Finally, the Good News Oracle Investors Have Been Waiting For (ORCL)