Pricing pressure for flat-panel TVs was among the factors given as LG Electronics reported a net loss for the fourth quarter, ended 31 December.

On a parent-company basis, LG reported sales of USD $4.84 billion for the quarter, an operating loss of USD $228 million and a net loss of USD $493 million.

In the fourth quarter of 2008, sales on a global basis rose 22.5 per cent year on year to USD $9.82 billion and operating profit was USD $74.2 million, resulting in a profit margin of 0.8 per cent.

For fiscal year 2008, annual sales on a global basis rose 20.8 per cent to a record USD $36.2 billion with operating profit at USD $1.56 billion.

By operating unit, LG’s digital display company sales rose to USD $3.39 billion, an increase of 16.4 per cent from a year earlier.

Sales of flat-panel digital TVs grew 22 per cent year on year and 26 per cent quarter on quarter, but PDP module sales declined 44 per cent year on year and 24 per cent quarter on quarter.

Globally, operating profit saw a loss of USD $10 million primarily due to a sharp drop in the prices of TVs and slowdown in external sales of PDP modules.

The company said it sees global demand in 2009 to be similar to 2008 as a result of growing low-end/small sized flat-panel TV demand in emerging markets and expects to expand its market share with stronger branding activities and product lineup.

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