Lower PC sales, DRAM to hit Toshiba bottom line

Toshiba lowered its income projections for the fiscal year ending March 31, blaming the weakening US market and lower than expected demand for several key products.

The company said Tuesday it expects to report group net income of 96 billion yen (US$834.8 million), a revision down of 30 per cent on its previous forecast. Consolidated net sales for the year are expected to be 5.98 trillion yen, a downward revision of 4 per cent compared to its previous prediction.

Toshiba blamed a variety of factors for the lower expectations.

Echoing remarks made by other personal computer makers, the company said lower shipments of machines in the important US market were hitting the bottom line, as were continued price reductions and the US economic slowdown. It also cited low DRAM (Dynamic Random Access Memory) prices as partially to blame.

More worryingly, the company also said demand for digital electronics equipment and cellular telephones was weaker than expected. These two categories have been two of the bright spots for electronics companies in the last year and have been credited with driving a lot of recent profit and sales growth at many major consumer electronics manufacturers.