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William Pesek

Apple Isn't Samsung's Big Problem

Currency fluctuations are eroding profits.
Money issues.

Money issues.

Photographer: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images

Samsung, which has just released weak first-quarter earnings, has a currency problem. After a 12 month period during which South Korea's won advanced 23 percent against the euro, Samsung is having trouble maintaining its sales. But the won has also declined in value against the U.S. dollar, which has raised the company's materials costs.

Samsung's profits, in other words, are getting crushed between two separate negative exchange rate dynamics. And to top it off, Apple, Samsung's primary competitor in cell phone sales, has just released a product, the iPhone 6, that's dominating the industry.