Matsushita Electric Works Ltd. said Tuesday its group net profits for the first half of this business year plunged 83.2 percent from a year earlier to 1.84 billion yen.

The firm, which produces building materials and lighting equipment, attributed the figures to a bigger-than-expected decline in corporate capital spending and private housing investment.

Its group pretax profits plummeted 72.7 percent to 8.07 billion yen, while its group revenues fell 7.8 percent to 572.71 billion yen.

Its group net profits per share stood at 2.62 yen, down sharply from the 15.20 yen logged a year earlier.

The company will pay an interim dividend of 6.25 yen per share for the first-half period, unchanged from a year ago.

For the full year through Nov. 30, Matsushita Electric Works expects to generate group net profits of 8 billion yen, down 57.4 percent from the previous year, along with group pretax profits of 24 billion yen, down 48.9 percent, on revenues of 1.18 trillion yen, down 1.6 percent.

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