AUO shares boosted by Q3 sales

2018/10/09 16:29:41 fontsize-small fontsize-default fontsize-big
AUO shares boosted by Q3 sales

Taipei, Oct. 9 (CNA) Shares of AU Optronics Corp. (AUO), one of the largest flat panel makers in Taiwan, got a boost Tuesday from an increase in sales for the third quarter of this year.

The stock outperformed the main board during the session also because its American depositary receipts (ADRs) moved higher in the U.S. market overnight, although many U.S. tech stocks ended in negative territory, according to dealers.

AUO shares rose 0.81 percent to close at NT$12.50 (US$0.40), with 23.10 million shares changing hands on the Taiwan Stock Exchange, where the benchmark weighted index ended up 0.10 percent at 10,466.83 points.

AUO ADRs gained 1.0 percent a day earlier, when the Nasdaq index closed down 0.67 percent, falling for the third consecutive session, led by large-cap stocks such as Apple Inc.

"The third quarter is a traditional peak season for the flat panel industry and that's why suppliers like AUO enjoyed sales growth in the three-month period," Mega International Investment Services Corp. analyst Alex Huang said.

In a statement released Monday, AUO said its consolidated sales for the July-September period rose 8 percent from a quarter earlier, but fell 7.3 percent from a year earlier to NT$81.04 billion.

In September, AUO posted NT$27.44 billion in consolidated sales, down 1.3 percent from a month earlier and also down 5.6 percent from a year earlier.

AUO said shipments of its large screens used for TVs, desk top computers and notebooks rose 6.5 percent from a quarter earlier to 29.79 million units in the third quarter. The third- quarter figure was also up 2.4 percent from a year earlier.

However, the firm reported a sequential decline of 6.1 percent in small and medium-sized screen shipments totaling 42.56 million units in the third quarter, which also fell 9.1 percent from a year earlier.

"AUO and other Taiwanese firms such as Innolux Corp. largely benefited from relatively high yield rates in large panel productions compared with their Chinese counterparts, so their shipments of TV panels with a size of more than 55 inches increased in the wake of rising demand in the third quarter," Huang said.

In September, AUO Chairman Paul Peng (彭双浪) said the company's TV panel clients are expected to continue to build up their inventories into the fourth quarter to meet continued peak-season effects.

Peng said he remains cautious about a possible impact from escalating trade friction between the United States and China.

In the second quarter, AUO posted NT$0.13 in earnings per share (EPS), down from NT$0.45 in EPS in the first quarter due to falling sales.

In the wake of the increase in sales in the third quarter, market analysts said AUO is expected to see its bottom line improving in the quarter. AUO has scheduled an investor conference for Oct. 31.

(By Pan Chih-yi and Frances Huang)
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