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Philips blames blah 1st quarter on Europe

Struggling Dutch electronics giant Philips has gloomily conceded that its main European markets are showing no signs of improvement.

After the announcement of its first-quarter results in Eindhoven Wednesday, the firm again blamed the worldwide consumer electronics slump, plus price erosion in Europe, for its continued slide in sales and profits.

A spokesman said Philips will refrain from making any further income predictions this year “since our main markets in Europe show no signs of improvement.”

Combined net income across all Philips’ product lines dropped by 36%, to $ 56 .8 million, compared to the corresponding period last year. The heaviest losses –$ 31 million before tax — were recorded by the consumer electronics division, a 7% drop from 1992’s performance, while the biggest gain –$ 121 million before tax — was in components and semiconductors, up 67%.

Total sales in the first quarter of 1993 fell 2% to $ 7.725 million.

A Philips spokesman said improved asset management had resulted in a reduction in working capital and a consequent cash-flow surplus of $ 434 million in the first quarter of 1993, vs. a financing deficit of $ 324 million a year earlier.

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