Global exporter Li & Fung says 2012 profit falls 9.4 pct

HONG KONG, March 21 Thu Mar 21, 2013 4:43am EDT

HONG KONG, March 21 (Reuters) - Global supply chain manager Li & Fung Ltd on Thursday posted a larger-than-expected 9.4 percent fall in net profit for 2012, hit by restructuring costs and provisions tied to its U.S. business.

The supply chain manager for retailers including Wal-Mart Stores Inc, Kohl's Corp and Target Corp, reported a full year net profit of $617 million, down from $681 million profit in 2011.

The result lagged market expectations of a $629 million profit, according to Thomson Reuters Starmine SmartEstimate.

Profit for the second half of the year was $305 million, down from a forecast of $317 million.

Li & Fung had in January warned that its 2012 core operating profit would fall 40 percent due to restructuring costs and provisions tied to its U.S. business, triggering a sell off in the stock.

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