UPDATE 2-M'bishi Electric H1 profit jumps, lifts outlook

Mon Oct 29, 2007 1:47am EDT

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(Adds details from news conference)

TOKYO Oct 29 (Reuters) - Mitsubishi Electric Corp (6503.T) on Monday posted a better-than-expected 38 percent rise in first-half operating profit, helped by strong sales of power systems and elevators to emerging nations, and it raised its full-year outlook by 17 percent.

Japan's fifth-largest industrial electronics maker and U.S. rival Rockwell Automation Inc (ROK.N) have benefited from strong investment in Asia, making gains while German rival Siemens AG (SIEGn.DE) battles corruption allegations on multiple fronts.

Mitsubishi Electric, which is also looking to sales of its trains to China and the Middle East and air conditioners in Europe for further growth, raised its profit forecast for the year to March to 233 billion yen, though the new outlook is still below the mean of 17 analysts' estimates of 254.8 billion yen.

Shares of Mitsubishi Electric rose 2.9 percent on the news, hitting a 14-day interday high before settling up 0.3 percent at 1,440 yen at 0526 GMT, while the benchmark Nikkei average .N225 was up 1.3 percent.

The company is factoring in risks such as high copper and crude oil prices, a slump in corporate investment due to the credit squeeze in the United States, as well as signs of a collapse in Asian shares, Senior Vice President Yukihiro Sato said at a news conference.

The company expects high raw material prices to create a 28 billion yen drag on earnings for the full year, he said.

The trains-to-rice-cookers conglomerate earned an operating profit of 129.19 billion yen ($1.13 billion) for April-September, up from 93.61 billion yen the previous year. The result compares with a consensus estimate of 121.83 billion yen by three analysts polled by Reuters.

Orders from car makers for lasers, sensors, robots and other tools to run factories remain strong, outpacing sluggish demand from flat panel display makers, Sato said.

First-half sales rose 5.5 percent to 1.89 trillion yen, while net profit rose 62 percent to hit 91.59 billion yen, prompting the firm to raise its full-year net profit forecast by 18 percent to a record 148 billion yen.

Since January, shares of Mitsubishi Electric gained 39 percent, outperforming the Nikkei average's 4.18 percent fall.

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