Sharp shares jumped nearly 9.0 percent in Tokyo trading on Friday after a
Japanese media report said the embattled electronics giant logged an
operating profit in the last quarter of 2012.
Investors pounced on the
mass-circulation Mainichi newspaper story, pushing Sharp's stock up
8.87 percent to 319 yen in afternoon trade even after the struggling
firm itself has previously raised doubts about its survival.
rivals Sony and Panasonic, Sharp has suffered a series of credit rating
downgrades and warned it expects to lose about $5.6 billion in the
fiscal year to March.
The company saw a quarterly operating profit
of about 20 billion yen ($225 million), its first since the
July-September quarter of 2011, the report said without citing sources.
Mainichi did not say if Sharp would also report a net profit in the
three months to December and the company denied the report, saying only
it would release quarterly earnings next month.
Takashi Okuda told Japanese media earlier this week that sales have seen
a year-on-year increase since September without elaborating.
Mainichi said the improved figures were largely due to a pick up in
demand for household appliances and liquid crystal display televisions, a
sector where Sharp and other Japanese electronics firms have suffered
in the face of stiff overseas competition and a surging yen.
the Japanese unit has weakened in recent months, helping make exporters
more competitive while cash-strapped Sharp "cleared a major hurdle" by
securing banks loans to stay afloat, it said.
The maker of Aquos-brand electronics is chopping thousands of jobs and cutting wages as part of a giant restructuring.
also said it would put up real estate as collateral for desperately
needed bank loans, including the century-old firm's Osaka headquarters,
as it pursued tie-ups with domestic and foreign firms.
December, Sharp said it had struck a 9.9-billion-yen capital injection
deal with chipmaker Qualcomm that would see the pair develop
energy-efficient LCD panels for smartphones using the Japanese firm's
The US company would initially get about 2.64 percent of Sharp's stock.
year, Sharp said it had reached an $800 million capital injection deal
with Taiwan's Hon Hai Precision, which makes Apple gadgets in China, but
the deal stalled as Sharp's share price nosedived.