Panasonic Predicts Worst Annual Loss in a Decade

By FOXBusiness

Panasonic (NYSE:PC) predicted on Monday its biggest loss in a decade and revised lower its full-year sales view, as the troubled company continued to struggle amid weak demand in emerging markets and an overall deterioration of the global economy.

The company expects to book a net loss of 420 billion yen ($5.5 billion) in 2012, which is lower than its earlier forecast of a 30 billion yen profit. It reduced sales to $8.7 trillion yen from 8.3 trillion yen a year ago.

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The announcement came as the company reported lower second-quarter sales and a weakened profit, which it attributed to the Japanese economy being “severely affected” by the “global economic recession,” led by the debt crisis in Europe, as well as the strengthening of the yen and declining stock prices.

Consolidated group sales were down 6% to 2.07 billion yen from 2.2 billion yen in the same period last year, while the company’s operating profit halved to 42 billion yen from 85.2 billion yen.

However, the electronics maker said there were signs of recovery, particularly since production and exports in Japan improved after being disrupted earlier in the year by the earthquake.

Weak sales in its digital AVC networks, components and devices, and recently purchased Sanyo divisions, could not offset gains in its pew and Panahome and home appliances units.

The company has accelerated the pace of its restructuring as it tries to make up for losses in its TV unit and revive operations.

In April, Panasonic said it would cut 17,000 jobs by March 2013, however on Monday the company said it planned to slim its workforce to 350,000 earlier-than-expected.

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