LG Tipped To Log On-Quarter Earnings Gain

LG Electronics is projected to post a sharp on-quarter rise in first-quarter earnings thanks to strong sales of anti-fine dust products, industry source said on March 28.

Analysts predict the South Korean electronics giant will register an operating profit of about 790 billion won ($694 million) for the January-March period.

The market estimate is up more than 10 times from the previous quarter, though it is down nearly 29 percent from a year earlier. LG chalked up an operating profit of 1.1 trillion won during the same period a year earlier, the company’s second-highest quarterly record.

The rosy forecast is bolstered by brisk sales of “new electronics products,” such as air purifiers, dryers and clothing-care home appliances in the wake of the worst bout of fine dust in Korea.

An analyst said resilient sales of those products appear to have contributed to offsetting the fallout from the usual low season for electronic products in March. Industry sources predicted the local market for new home appliances will grow sharply down the road.

Sales of air purifiers are projected to rise to 4 million units this year from 1.4 million two years earlier, with shipments of dryers climbing to 2 million this year from 1.5 million in 2018. Sales of clothing-care products are predicted to soar to 450,000 units this year from 150,000 in 2017.

LG’ home appliance and air solution division is thus expected to post sales of more than 20 trillion won for the first time this year. But its mobile communication division, which is in charge of smartphones, is forecast to remain in the red, which started in the second quarter of 2017.

Analysts said LG  is likely to outperform Samsung Electronics and other tech firms in Korea in terms of first-quarter earnings.―The Investor

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