Samsung Electronics said that net profit fell 72% in the first quarter. Samsung earned 619.20 billion won (approx. US$463.5 million) in the three months ended March 31. Quarterly sales rose 8.5%.
Samsung said that weak demand for semiconductors, one of its mainstay products, extended into the first quarter. The company manufactures dynamic random access memory, chips used mostly in personal computers as well as NAND flash memory chips used in digital devices such as cameras and music players.
Samsung said that market conditions were improving, noting the "strong recovery from the fourth quarter" as semiconductor prices stabilized, profit margins for mobile phones increased and the company took steps to control marketing and other expenditures.
The company forecast a marginal increase in sales in the second quarter, "driven by seasonal demand and the introduction of digital broadcasting in the United States."
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