June 03, 2013 11:52
Major Korean companies listed on the Korea Exchange are seeing a decline in earnings. For some time even after the global financial crisis, most Korean firms managed to achieve steady profit growth, but that is now over.
The Korea Listed Companies Association tabulated the first-quarter earnings of 625 listed companies on Sunday and found that the sales of 322 of them or 52 percent fell compared to the same period last year.
In 2012, only 42 percent saw sales dip.
The sales of one in every four dropped more than 10 percent this first quarter.
Some 64 percent of all listed companies saw operating profit either decline or swing into the red during the first quarter. Among the top 100 in terms of sales, the proportion rose to a whopping 70 percent.
The total sales of all listed firms dropped 1.4 percent on-year to W286.4 trillion (US$1=W1,131).
Excluding Samsung Electronics, which achieved record earnings, overall sales shrank 2 percent.
Overall operating profit rose 4.1 percent, but combined net profit dropped 15.3 percent.
Hyundai Motor’s sales fell 6.7 percent and operating profit plunged 36.8 percent due to the impact of the weak Japanese yen, which makes rival Japanese cars cheaper overseas.
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