Japanese firms' net profit in Q1 down 41.3 pct on cost hikes

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TOKYO, May 13 (Xinhua) -- The total net profit of listed companies in Japan shed 41.3 percent to stand at 4.94 trillion yen (38.34 billion U.S. dollars) in the January to March period compared to the previous quarter, local media reported Friday.

According to data from SMBC Nikko Securities in Japan, when excluding SoftBank Group Corp., an investment giant that reported a record net loss Thursday, the Japanese companies suffered a 16.0-percent fall in combined net profit in the first quarter.

In the fiscal year of 2021 that ended in March, total net profit increased 31.8 percent to 28.53 trillion yen (221.43 U.S. billion dollars) on the yen's depreciation against the U.S. dollar as a weaker yen boosted exporters' profits earned overseas when repatriated.

The data was collected from 891 listed firms, or about 60 percent of the companies making up the Topix index on the Tokyo Stock Exchange, that closed their books in March and released results as of Thursday.

The manufacturing sector also experienced the net profit downturn in the January to March quarter, though it has been leading the recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, losing 18.3 percent to 3.90 trillion yen (30.27 U.S. billion dollars).

The transportation equipment sector including automakers reported a 36.5-percent decline in net profit for the reporting quarter.

According to the data, sales in the first quarter of 2022 climbed 7.1 percent compared with the previous quarter, and up 11.4 percent compared to a year earlier.

Of the listed companies that end their business year in March, about 900 released earnings reports on Friday, the peak day of this year's account settlement period. Enditem

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