Olympus files delayed earnings, meets deadline

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Scandal-hit Olympus on Wednesday filed delayed first half earnings for fiscal 2011, Japan's Financial Services Authority said, meeting a deadline to avoid being delisted from the stock exchange.

For the six months to September, the 92-year-old company reported a 32.3 billion yen ($414 million) net loss amid a massive accounting scandal that has badly tarnished the image of corporate Japan.

In the same period last year, it reported a net profit of 3.81 billion yen.

The camera and medical instrument maker pledged to mend its ways in its financial statement.

"It has been revealed that our company had announced false financial statements by delaying reporting losses from stocks and other investments," it said.

"The third-party committee (established to probe the scandal) pointed to problems with our corporate governance.

"Our company will... try to carry out fundamental reforms in order to achieve recovery of trust as quickly as possible."

Olympus said it could not issue an outlook for its earnings for 2011 as a whole because of the problems.

"It is difficult to make a rational assessment on how much the company's loss transfers that have come to light recently will affect our sales activities," the company said.

"We are now undecided on full-year earnings forecasts for the year to March 2012 but will disclose them as soon as it becomes possible to make forecasts."

The company earlier filed corrected earnings reports for the past five fiscal years, fixing results up until March 2011.

Two auditing companies, past and present, approved the corrected earnings filings, Dow Jones Newswires reported.

Ernst & Young ShinNihon LLC. gave the go-ahead for earnings through to March 2010 and the past fiscal year, while KPMG Azsa LLC. signed off on the three fiscal years through to March 2009 with some qualifications.

KPMG Azsa said some information on the funds Olympus used in its loss-hiding scheme was unavailable.

For the fiscal year to March 2011 alone, Olympus revised downward its net profit from an original 7.38 billion yen to 3.87 billion yen in its latest version.

The delayed 2011 first-half filing came after the closure of the stock exchange, where shares in the company finished the day down 4.08 percent at 1,314 yen after four consecutive days of gains.

© 2011 AFP

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