Cisco Wednesday posted earnings for the first quarter of its 2003 fiscal year a penny better per share than expectations, though flat from the fourth quarter of 2002.Cisco\u00a0Wednesday posted earnings for the first quarter of its 2003 fiscal year a penny better per share than expectations, though flat from the fourth quarter of 2002.First-quarter earnings were $1 billion, or $0.14 per share, on revenue of $4.8 billion. Earnings and revenue are up 213% and 9%, respectively, from the same period a year ago, but flat with the fourth quarter of fiscal 2002.Analysts expected first-quarter earnings to come in at $0.13 per share on revenue of $4.8 billion.Despite the better than expected first quarter results, Cisco provided no assurance that the high-tech slump is nearing an end. Conversely, Cisco said the current quarter could be down as much as 4% from the first quarter."Guidance for the January quarter (is) worse than we expected," stated investment firm UBS Warburg in a bulletin highlighting Cisco's quarter.All\u00a0 major\u00a0 product areas\u00a0 - routers, switches, access and "other," which includes Cisco's optical portfolio - showed flat overall revenue performance for four straight quarters.In the U.S., service provider bookings were flat sequentially for the second straight quarter. UBS Warburg believes that enterprise and commercial bookings likely declined sequentially as Cisco ate into backlog during the quarter.In enterprise, sales to the federal government accounted for 18% to 20% of all U.S. enterprise sales in the quarter, up from 8% to 10% two quarters ago."Cisco's dominant positions and profitable product lines in the enterprise market continue to carry the company through the downturn, while it better prepares to penetrate the service provider market," says Bill Lesieur, director of Technology Business Research in Hampton, N.H.As for Cisco bettering its position with service providers by acquiring Lucent's market leading ATM product line - which UBS Warburg suggested they do - while handing Lucent some much needed cash, Lesieur doesn't see that happening."Cisco is not going to jump in and save Lucent," he says.Cisco doesn't see it happening either."If we buy a product that's very similar to our own product, you've got competing internal projects that cause you challenges in bringing them together," says Cisco CEO John Chambers. "Would we ever acquire a very large peer in the marketplace? Very unlikely. You never say never but it's as close as I can say to that."