Price at lowest point since 1980

Sony stock fell to its lowest level since 1984 in overnight trading in Tokyo as the company and its new CEO, Kazuo Hirai, face major ongoing challenges in key businesses.

The shares dipped below 1,000 yen ($12.79) on the Tokyo market before recovering to close slightly above that level. The 28-year low comes as Sony prepares a press conference at E3, the annual videogame confab at the Los Angeles Convention Center that opens Tuesday.

Among other announcements, bloggers think the company may announce a price cut on its PlayStation Vita handheld.

Sony recently posted a steep loss for its last fiscal year, which ends in March, and said it plans to lay off 10,000 people. It lost $5.6 billion and saw revenue drop 10% on lagging electronics and hardware sales, global economic turmoil and natural disasters. Markets everywhere are being hammered on and off by European woes. But Sony’s stock has had a pretty consistent downtrend for years as rivals emerged to chip away at its market.

The conglom said it expects to swing back to profit for the current fiscal year, but that rosier outlook hasn’t seemed to help the stock price as investors wait for the company to emerge from its long rut.

In New York, Sony closed at $12.65 Friday. The stock opened at $12.85 on Monday and was at $12.71 in mid-day trading. Its shares have been slashed in half from their 52-week high of $27.32.

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