The world's biggest smartphone maker kept its full-year investment
plan conservative and warned it would be difficult to increase
earnings in the first quarter as demand pulls back from the year-end
October-December operating profit fell 6 percent on year to 8.3
trillion won ($7.7 billion), in line with a previous estimate of 8.3
trillion won, Samsung said in a statement on Friday.
The figure was brought down by an 800 billion won ($745 million)
special employee bonus to commemorate 20 years since Chairman Lee
Kun-hee announced a management strategy that the company regards as
the catalyst to its recent growth.
It said a stronger won also hit profit, knocking off around 700
Shares of Samsung Electronics, worth $204 billion, edged up 0.4
percent after the earnings release, compared with the benchmark
index which fell 0.3 percent. The stock has fallen 8 percent in the
past month on concern over slowing smartphone growth.
"It will be challenging for Samsung to improve its earnings in the
first quarter as the weak seasonality of the IT industry will put
pressure on demand for components and TV products," the company said
in a statement.
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Samsung said its 2014 capital expenditure, a barometer of broader
technology industry demand for manufacturing tools such as chip
equipment, will be similar to 2013's 23.8 trillion won.
Operating profit at its cash cow mobile division stood flat at 5.47
trillion won, but slipped 18 percent from July-September's record
6.7 trillion won as new iPhones drew away sales during the year-end
Operating profit from display unit Samsung Display tumbled 90
percent to 110 billion won as weaker-than-forecast sales of the
Galaxy S4 left smartphone screens sitting in the inventory, while
subdued sales of television sets also had an impact on TV screen
(Reporting by Miyoung Kim; editing by
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