Toshiba cuts 2010/11 operating profit estimate after

Reuters

TOKYO (Reuters) - Toshiba Corp said it likely fell short of its operating profit estimate for the past business year by 4 percent after last month's massive earthquake and tsunami affected operations at some of its plants.

The Japanese electronics maker said on Tuesday it now expects an operating profit of 240 billion yen ($2.9 billion) for the year ended in March, 10 billion yen short of its prior projection.

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But the company revised up its net profit estimate to 135 billion yen from 100 billion yen. A spokesman said that restructuring costs had been lower than expected and that the company had sold off some real estate.

The revision was well flagged following a report in the Nikkei business daily and comments this month by Toshiba Chief Executive Norio Sasaki that net profit could exceed previous guidance.

The latest business year will mark Toshiba's first year in the black on a net basis in three years. It posted a 19.7 billion yen net loss in year to March 2010.

Toshiba lowered its sales estimate to 6.4 trillion yen for 2010/11 from 6.6 trillion yen, following damage and electricity shortages at factories from the disasters.

Shares of Toshiba were unchanged in early afternoon trading on Tuesday, outperforming a 1.2 percent fall in the broader market.

(Reporting by Junko Fujita and Isabel Reynolds; Writing by James Topham; Editing by Chris Gallagher)

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