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Nippon Steel Corp. said Thursday it posted a group net loss of 28.4 billion yen in the year to March 31, hit mainly by valuation losses on its securities holdings.

The 2001 results marked a sharp reversal from the 26.49 billion yen profit the year before.

Group pretax profit plunged 85 percent to 16.75 billion yen, after sales fell 6.1 percent to 2.58 trillion yen amid sharp falls in steel prices worldwide, the company said.

The company booked an extraordinary loss of 96.74 billion yen, of which 72.95 billion yen was attributed to appraisal losses on securities holdings.

The company will pay a dividend of 1.5 yen per share for the year, unchanged from a year earlier.

For the current year, the company forecasts a group net profit of 25 billion yen and a group pretax profit of 75 billion yen on sales of 2.65 trillion yen.

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