Financial and Banking News
Mitsubishi UFJ Q1 profit slides 66,2%Top Japanese bank Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG) issued a financial report. Bank's net profit I quarter in the 2008-2009 fiscal year decreased by 66.2% to 51.2 billion yen ($475 million) against 151.26 billion yen ($1.4 billion) received for the same period a year earlier.
The Group links the decline in financial performance for the reporting period the global financial crisis. Mitsubishi UFJ lost 16 billion yen ($147.9 million) on investments backed by U.S. subprime mortgages and other securitised products in the April-June quarter, bringing its total losses from the year-long global credit crisis to 139 billion yen ($1.3 billion) so far.
Mitsubishi UFJ has a market capitalisation of $93.6 billion, making it the seventh-largest company on the FTSE global bank index. In addition to a sharp downturn in global markets, which has sparked trading losses and curbed customer demand for investment products, Japanese banks have been struggling to make headway in a sluggish domestic economy.
Two of Mitsubishi UFJ's rivals, Mizuho Financial Group and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group last week both reported sharp declines in first-quarter core profitability. The lacklustre results come amid a stream of economic data pointing to weakness in the world's second-largest economy.
Manufacturing activity has now contracted for a fifth straight month while wage earnings and housing starts have both dropped from a year ago, further evidence that high energy prices and shrinking exports may push Japan into a recession.
Source: Financial Times
Date: 05.08.2008 
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