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Pioneer Slumps to First-Half Loss on Drop in Sharp Value

Pioneer Corp., a Japanese car-navigation systems maker, had a loss in the first half because of a charge to reflect a drop in the value of its holdings in Sharp Corp.

The net loss was about 4.83 billion yen ($61.6 million) in the six months ended Sept. 30, compared with a previous estimate of a 1 billion yen profit, the Kawasaki, Japan-based company said in a preliminary earnings statement today. It booked a charge of 5.83 billion yen on the decline in Sharp’s market value, spokesman Hiromitsu Kimura said by phone. Pioneer also scrapped plans to pay a first-half dividend.

Sharp, which formed an equity partnership with Pioneer in 2007, fell 52 percent in the three months ended Sept. 30, as it forecast a second straight annual loss. Pioneer has a 0.9 percent stake in Sharp, while Sharp has a 9.2 percent stake in Pioneer, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Osaka-based Sharp plans to cut more than 10,000 jobs and sell overseas plants as well as U.S. solar developer Recurrent Energy LLC in an attempt to return to profit next fiscal year, people with knowledge of the plans said last month.

Pioneer was unchanged at 170 yen on the Tokyo Stock Exchange before the company announced its preliminary earnings. The stock has declined 51 percent this year, compared with a 4.8 percent gain in the benchmark Nikkei 225 Stock Exchange.

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