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Jul 23, 3:51 AM EDT

LG Display's 2Q profit jumps as demand for big ultra-high-definition TV rises, currency rates


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LG Electronics says 2Q profit more than doubled as mobile division ends streak of losses

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SEOUL, South Korea (AP) -- LG Display Co. said profit for the April-June quarter more than doubled as a stronger won reduced the value of its foreign debt and the World Cup boosted demand for ultra-high-definition TVs.

The South Korean display panel maker said Wednesday its net income reached 256 billion won ($250 million), compared with 105 billion won a year earlier. Operating fell, however, showing that most of the net profit improvement came from the debt revaluation.

Analysts polled by FactSet, a financial data provider, expected profit of 114 billion won.

The panel supplier for Apple Inc. said higher demand for UHD TVs during the World Cup increased panel shipments.

LG Display's parent company, LG Electronics Inc., is among the TV makers betting that a quadrupling of the resolution of high-definition TVs will convince consumers to upgrade.

Consumer interest in UHD TV sets, also known as "4K," is positive for panel makers especially because those advanced TV sets tend to come in big sizes, featuring screens larger than 40 inches.

LG said a slight decline in panel prices during the second quarter was offset by selling more panels.

The company was also helped by the rise of South Korean won, which reduced the size of its foreign currency denominated debt.

Overall sales, however, fell 9 percent to 5.6 trillion won. Operating profit plunged 55 percent to 163 billion won, slightly lower than analysts' forecast.

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