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Nikon Drops to Lowest in 19 Months on Forecast Cut: Tokyo Mover

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Aug. 9 (Bloomberg) -- Nikon Corp. plunged to the lowest in almost 19 months after yesterday cutting its full-year profit target by almost a quarter on weaker demand for compact cameras.

The Tokyo-based company plummeted 14 percent to 1,726 yen in Tokyo trading, the lowest close since January 2012. The stock has lost 32 percent this year, compared with a 33 percent gain for the broader Topix index.

Nikon yesterday cut its full-year net income target by 23 percent to 50 billion yen ($517 million) from a 65 billion-yen forecast in May. The company lowered its operating profit forecast 24 percent to 65 billion yen from 85 billion yen.

“The market may not have expected Nikon to lower full-year guidance at this time, so there may be a negative impact on the share price over the near term,” Yu Yoshida, a Tokyo-based analyst with Credit Suisse Group AG, said in a note today.

Nikon is looking at ways to tap smartphone growth as a slump in compact-camera sales may lead to weaker-than-forecast earnings, President Makoto Kimura said in a July 4 interview.

Global shipments of compact digital cameras slid 48 percent in May compared with a year earlier, while more expensive single-lens-reflex cameras, or SLRs, declined about 6 percent, according to the Camera & Imaging Products Association in Tokyo.

Smartphone shipments jumped 52 percent in the second quarter to 237.9 million, according to Framingham, Massachusetts-based IDC Corp.

To contact the reporter on this story: Mariko Yasu in Tokyo at myasu@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Tighe at mtighe4@bloomberg.net

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