• The Associated Press

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Panasonic’s quarterly profit jumped 24 percent, driven by strong sales of flat-panel TVs, auto components and solar panels that offset damage from a strong yen.

The Osaka-based maker of Viera plasma TVs and Lumix digital cameras Wednesday reported a ¥39.98 billion profit for the October-December quarter, up from ¥32.26 billion the year before.

The solid results came despite the damage from a strong yen, severe price drops in gadgets and soaring materials costs.

Quarterly sales for the electronics maker climbed 21 percent to ¥2.285 trillion.

Panasonic had strong sales both in Japan and abroad, helped by a gradual global recovery, but also by economic stimulus spending in several countries, including rebates for green gadgets in Japan.

Panasonic also said it was well on its way to completing by April the acquisition of rival Sanyo Electric Co., which will be converted into a wholly owned subsidiary.

The company said it hoped to gain synergy from Sanyo, which makes solar panels and batteries for hybrids and other ecological vehicles.

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