• Kyodo


Panasonic Corp. said Wednesday its group net profit in the six months to September fell 4.5 percent from a year earlier, citing weakening investment in China and sluggish sales of consumer electronics.

The electronics maker posted a group net profit of ¥113.62 billion ($1.00 billion) in the first half ended on Sept. 30. Group operating profit declined 0.7 percent to ¥195.24 billion, while group sales grew 3.9 percent to ¥4.01 trillion, led by the automotive equipment division.

For the fiscal year ending March 31, the company maintained its forecast for a net profit of ¥250 billion, up 5.9 percent, and an operating profit of ¥425 billion, up 11.7 percent, on sales of ¥8.3 trillion, up 4.0 percent.

In the consumer electronics segment, its TV sales struggled in Europe and India, while demand for air conditioners remained firm in the Japanese market amid record heat waves during the summer.

The automotive business — its core operation — saw sales of infotainment, driver assistant systems and other car parts growing in the domestic and North American market.

But demand for industrial devices fell in China due to escalating trade frictions with the United States, offsetting the sales in the automotive segment, Panasonic said.

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