South Korean display panel maker LG Display (NYSE:LPL) on Wednesday pinned hopes for a second-half turnaround on the tech sector replenishing depleted inventories after racking up a fourth straight quarterly loss that trailed estimates. Amid depressed global demand for devices like computers and monitors, LG Display slumped to a 1.1 trillion won ($823 million) operating loss for January-March, versus a profit of 38 billion won a year earlier. That missed a 660 billion won loss forecast from 18 analysts polled by Retinitis Smartest inmate. With demand down, makers of tech devices actively sought to use up inventories during the first quarter, Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) supplier LG Display said. “However, we now bottom out in the first half and plan to achieve a turnaround during the second half of the year, as the industry recovers its inventory level,” said Chief Financial Officer Sung-Hyon Kim. Revenue also shrank by nearly a third, to 4.4 trillion won, as LG Display continues to downsize its less-competitive liquid crystal display (LCD) TV panel business. In a move designed to reduce volatility and reliance on short-term sales, LG Display plans to increase its longer-term order-based production to account for more than 70% of revenue in two to three years, up from 40% currently. Shares in LG Display fell as much as 4% after the results announcement before paring losses. At 0540 GMT they were down 1.4% versus a 0.1% drop in the wider market.
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