South Korea's Hynix Semiconductor said Thursday it posted record quarterly sales in the three months to March on the back of strong demand, achieving a third straight quarter in the black.
The world's second-largest memory chip maker said net profit was 822 billion won (742 million dollars) in the first quarter, compared with a 1.18 trillion won loss a year earlier.
Sales were 2.82 trillion won during the January-March period, the highest ever quarterly figure, the company statement said.
Operating profit was 799 billion won, compared with a 515 billion won loss a year ago.
The company attributed the better-than-expected quarterly performance to firmer chip prices and robust demand for personal computers amid tight supply.
Hynix said the prices of DRAM chips, widely used in personal computers, increased three percent quarter-on-quarter in the January-March period, when shipments also rose six percent.
But the prices of NAND flash chips -- mostly used in digital cameras, mp3 players and smartphones -- fell eight percent quarter-on-quarter in the period as demand was flat.
Hynix said, however, it plans to double its production of NAND flash chips by the year end on expectations of rising demand and new product launches.
"Earnings growth will continue through the third quarter of the year on higher demand," Kim Sung-In, an analyst at KiWoom Securities, told Yonhap news agency, expecting quarterly operating profit to top one trillion won.
Hynix has swung to profit since the third quarter of last year thanks to rising memory chip prices, after seven consecutive quarterly losses.
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