Sony profits fall 95 percent

TOKYO, Japan (CNN) — Sony blamed the global economic slowdown, increased competition and an appreciating yen for a 95 percent drop in third-quarter profits, as the company announced its results Thursday.

Customers check Sony's Bravia brand LCD TVs at an electronics shop in Tokyo, Japan.

Customers check Sony’s Bravia brand LCD TVs at an electronics shop in Tokyo, Japan.

Profits for the quarter, which ended December 31, fell from nearly 200 billion yen ($2.2 billion) in 2007 to about 10 billion yen ($110 million) in 2008.

Across the company, sales were down 25 percent, but electronics and games sales were especially hard hit.

Sales of games, including the company’s popular PlayStation series, fell 32 percent over the year. Sales of electronics decreased by nearly 30 percent.

The appreciation of the yen also cut into profits.

A stronger yen makes Japanese products more expensive or forces companies to lower their profit margins to keep prices the same.

Last week, Sony warned that it will close out the fiscal year, which ends March 31, with an operating loss of 260 billion yen ($2.9 billion), its first in 14 years.

Source

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