Fri, Dec 24, 2004 - Page 11 News List

Chi Mei slashes its profit forecast by almost 40 percent

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Chi Mei Optoelectronics Corp (奇美電子), the nation's second-largest maker of flat-panel displays used in computers and televisions, cut its pretax profit forecast for this year 39 percent because of a decline in its product prices.

Chi Mei now forecasts a pretax profit of NT$18.4 billion (US$571 million), down from its April forecast of NT$30.2 billion, the company said in a statement to the Taiwan Stock Exchange.

Tainan-based Chi Mei also lowered its sales forecast for this year to NT$102.6 billion from NT$125.6 billion.

Chi Mei's revision came after smaller rival Chunghwa Picture Tubes Ltd (中華映管), the country's third-largest flat-panel display maker, cut its profit forecast for this year on Wednesday by a third to NT$11.8 billion, citing a decline in industry prices. Taipei-based Chunghwa Picture lowered its sales forecast 17 percent to NT$78.4 billion.

On Dec. 10, AU Optronics Corp (友達光電), the world's third-largest maker of flat-panel displays used in computers and televisions, said it expects the decline in screen prices that began earlier this year to come to an end as demand rebounds.

The stock has gained 31 percent this year. Chunghwa Picture shares rose 1.5 percent to NT$13.85.

Meanwhile, Tatung Co (大同), Taiwan's fourth-largest electronics maker, lowered its profit forecast for this year by 26 percent. Tatung owns more than half of Chunghwa Picture.

Tatung said it expects to show net profit of NT$6.36 billion (US$198 million), down from its September forecast of NT$8.64 billion, the company said in a statement to the stock exchange.

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