Singapore's top carrier posts flat quarterly profit

SingTel posted flat underlying quarterly net profit, as strength in the Singapore dollar crimped contributions from regional mobile associates, a Reuters report said.

State-controlled SingTel made underlying net profit before goodwill and exceptionals of S$865 million (€411 million, US$613 million) in the April-June quarter, compared with S$868 million (€413.5 million, US$615 million) in the year-ago period, the Reuters report added.

This was below an average net profit forecast of S$930.3 million (€443 million, US$659 million) from 3 analysts polled by Reuters.

First-quarter attributable net profit was S$878 million (€418.3 million, US$622.2 million), down 5.3% from S$927 million (€441.5 million, US$657 million) last year.

Facing a domestic market of just 4.6 million people where virtually everyone has a mobile phone, SingTel has spent S$18 billion (€6 billion, US$12.7 billion) in recent years buying stakes in mobile operators in high-growth Asian countries such as India and in the bigger Australian market.

SingTel derives about three quarters of its sales and two-thirds of pretax earnings from operations outside Singapore.