Sony Ericsson loses $301 million as sales slump

Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications, the handset making joint venture between Sony and Ericsson, said it swung to a second-quarter loss of 213 million euros ($301 million) as sales dropped 40% to 1.68 billion euros. The firm, which earned 6 million euros in the year-earlier quarter, saw its gross margins nearly halved to 12% from 23% as the number of units shipped fell to 13.8 million from 24.4 million. The company said the remainder of the year will be difficult as it said it's on track to reduce operating expenses by 880 million euros by the second half of 2010. Sony Ericsson maintains its forecast that the global handset market for 2009 will continue to contract by at least 10%.

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