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NEW YORK, Aug 5 (Reuters) – Cisco Systems Inc (NASDAQ:CSCO) reported an 18 percent fall in quarterly revenue as customers held back spending on network equipment, but the decline was mostly in line with Wall Street forecasts and its profit was better than expected.

Chief Executive John Chambers also said the company saw "a number of positive signs" in its fiscal fourth quarter compared to the previous quarter.

"If we continue to see these positive order trends for the next one to two quarters, we believe there is a good chance we will look back and see that the tipping point occurred in our business in Q4," he said in a statement.

Shares of the world’s biggest manufacturer of routers and switches rose about 2 percent after it said revenue in the quarter ended July 25 fell to $8.5 billion from $10.4 billion in the same period a year earlier.

That was in line with Wall Street’s average forecast, according to Reuters Estimates. The company had forecast a fall of around 17 percent to 20 percent.

Quarterly net profit fell to $1.1 billion, or 19 cents a share, from $2.0 billion, or 33 cents a share, a year ago. Earnings excluding items were 31 cents, above the average analyst forecast of 29 cents, according to Reuters Estimates.

Cisco shares rose to around $22.54 after closing at $22.17 on Nasdaq.

Investors will be focusing on Chief Executive John Chambers’ remarks about the business outlook, including his forecasts for the current quarter, on a conference call due to begin shortly.

(Reporting by Ritsuko Ando; Editing by Richard Chang)