LG Household Posts Asia’s Biggest Drop on Earnings: Seoul Mover

LG Household & Health Care Ltd. (051900), a South Korean maker of household cleaning and personal care products, slumped the most in nine months in Seoul trading after forecasting profit growth that fell short of estimates.

The stock retreated 5.5 percent to 632,000 won as of 10:59 a.m. on the Korea Exchange, poised for its steepest loss since April 2 last year. It’s the worst-performer on the MSCI Asia Pacific Index today.

LG Household is targeting about 535 billion won ($502 million) in operating profit this year, the company said in a filing yesterday. That’s lower than the 568.4 billion won average of analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg. Sales at major South Korean department stores declined in December as persistent concerns over the global and local economic outlook eroded consumer confidence.

“With the recovery of domestic demand expected around the second quarter or the third, which is later than previously anticipated, the company tends to set conservative targets for 2013,” Park Eun Kyung, an analyst at Samsung Securities Co., wrote in a report today. She reduced the share-price estimate to 793,000 won from 841,000 won.

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. today cut its 2013 economic growth forecast for Korea to 3.1 percent from 3.4 percent.

To contact the reporter on this story: Saeromi Shin in Seoul at sshin15@bloomberg.net;

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Darren Boey at dboey@bloomberg.net

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