TAIPEI (Reuters) – Taiwan’s Foxconn <2317.TW> posted a 23% rise in quarterly profit on Wednesday, as its biggest customer Apple Inc <AAPL.O> reported better-than-expected earnings thanks to solid sales of mobile devices such as wearables.
Foxconn, the world’s largest contract electronics manufacturer, reported a net profit of T$30.7 billion (781.5 million pounds) for the July-September quarter, versus an average forecast of T$27.75 billion by 12 analysts compiled by Refinitiv.
The company did not elaborate on the profit rise from T$24.88 billion a year earlier.
The outlook for Foxconn has improved after Apple gave a positive forecast last month for the year-end holiday shopping quarter.
But the Taipei-based company also faces uncertainty as the protracted Sino-U.S. trade war could raise tariffs on iPhones sold in the U.S. market. Foxconn manufactures the bulk of Apple’s iPhones in China, and analysts estimate nearly half of its revenue comes from the U.S. firm.
More U.S. tariffs against China are set to take effect on Dec. 15, although officials from both sides said they have agreed to roll back tariffs on each others’ goods if a “phase one” trade deal can be negotiated.
Chairman Liu Young-way told an investor conference he sees slight yearly growth in 2020 in Foxconn’s consumer electronics and smart devices business, which includes smartphones and TVs, thanks to “a stabilizing global economic situation.” He did not elaborate.
Prior to the earnings announcement, shares in Foxconn, formally known as Hon Hai Precision Industry Co, closed down 1.4% on Wednesday, lagging the broader market <.TWII>.
Despite trade war concerns and generally sluggish global demand for electronics, the stock has gained nearly 27% so far this year.
(Reporting By Yimou Lee; Editing by Kim Coghill)