LG profit plunges, missing forecasts by a mile

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LG profit plunges, missing forecasts by a mile

LG Electronics’ operating profit fell nearly 80 percent in the fourth-quarter of 2018 year-on-year, according to preliminary figures disclosed in a Financial Supervisory Service regulatory filing Tuesday.

The smartphone and household appliances manufacturer estimated 75.3 billion won ($67.0 million) in operating profit for the final quarter of last year compared to 366.8 billion won in the same quarter in 2017.

The estimate is far below the 398.1 billion won forecast by analysts surveyed by FnGuide, a data provider.

The company anticipated 15.8 trillion won in revenue from October to December last year, a 7-percent decline from the same period a year earlier.

Analysts pointed to the slowing global smartphone market as a factor weighing on the company.

“With the smartphone market currently in a slump, [the company] is unable to find an opportunity to recover,” said Kim Ji-san, an analyst at Kiwoom Securities in a report Tuesday that predicted disappointing earnings prior to LG’s announcement. “Demand has slowed as smartphone replacement cycles have become longer in high-value markets such as Korea and the United States,” Kim added.

Meanwhile, the company estimated annual operating profit for 2018 at 2.7 trillion won, a 9.5 percent rise from the previous year.

BY CHAE YUN-HWAN [chae.yunhwan@joongang.co.kr]
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