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Last Updated: Wednesday, 16 May 2007, 11:04 GMT 12:04 UK
Hitachi harmed by nuclear costs
Hitachi televisions
Falling costs of electronic items have harmed Hitachi
Japan's Hitachi has reported a loss following problems at its nuclear power units and lower electronic goods sales.

The company posted a loss of 32.8bn yen ($272m; 137m) in the year to 31 March, in sharp contrast to the 37.32bn yen profit seen a year earlier.

Costs from failing nuclear units and lower hard drive and flat-screen TV prices contributed to the drop.

Despite the fall, the deficit was less than forecast and Hitachi expects to return to profit this year.

The firm, Japan's largest industrial electronics company, has reiterated that it will embark on cost-cutting moves to counter its poor results.

The failure of Hitachi-branded turbines in a nuclear unit had prompted the firm to pay for fixing and updating two subsidiaries, Chubu Electric Power and Hokuriku Electric Power.

Prolonged repairs to build a coal-fired power station for a US firm, MidAmerican, had also helped to push the firm into a loss.

Hitachi is forecasting a net income of 40bn yen this fiscal year, based on higher power plant sales and industrial machinery.

There has been speculation that the firm, which has more than 130 subsidiary firms, might consider offloading some of its worse performing units to reverse its fortunes.

News that the firm would reverse its poor results sent shares in the firm up by 2% on the Nikkei.

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