Things are going haywire for Japanese trading houses this week. Following in the footsteps of Mitsui & Co, Mitsubishi Corporation has also announced a profit downgrade due to weak commodity prices.
The company said in a statement after the Japanese market close it expected to suffer an impairment of Y430bn ($3.8bn) that would lead to a loss of Y150bn for the fiscal year ending in March 31. It had previously forecast a profit of Y300bn, and delivered a profit of Y400bn in fiscal 2014.
The revision was due to the impairment loss of Y430bn, which the company said was brought about “through close revaluation of assets considering the continuously stagnant natural-resource market prices”.
The company kept its dividend forecast of Y25 per share.
Approximately Y280bn of the total Y430bn revision was due to copper projects in Chile. The company also booked impairments on its Australian iron ore business and South African ferrochrome business.
Mitsubishi also said it would take a Y40bn hit on the postponement of the Browse liquefied natural gas project off the Western Australian coast. Woodside Petroleum yesterday announced it had indefinitely postponed plans to develop Browse, in which Japan Australia LNG – a joint venture between Mitsubishi and Mitsui– is an investor.
Low commodity prices are hitting Japanese trading companies, as Mitsui yesterday said it expected to book impairments of Y260bn after tax, taking the company to its first loss since 1947.
Mitsubishi shares ended today’s trading down 4 per cent at Y1920.
Get alerts on Front page when a new story is published