Sony/Sharp: A red ink deluge

Sony and Sharp announced $11 billion in annual losses as the first decline in global TV shipments in six years and a stronger yen pummeled Japan’s biggest LCD TV makers. Sony says it lost $6.4 billion in its 2011 fiscal year, the worst earnings performance since its founding in 1946, and Sharp posted a record $4.7 billion loss. Once symbols of Japan’s dominance in electronics, both companies have been hammered by Apple and Samsung, a yen that hit a postwar high, and the aftermath of last year’s quake. The Nikkei newspaper reports that Sony’s new president, Kazuo Hirai, plans to cut 10,000 jobs. Sharp turned to Taiwan’s Foxconn Technology Group for a $1.6 billion infusion.

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