Sony's Q2 earnings drop 94%

Sony's profit dropped 94% in the July-September quarter as a global battery recall and red ink in its video-game business hurt the Japanese electronics and entertainment company, an Associated Press report said.

The report said Sony's group net profit for the fiscal second quarter totaled 1.7 billion yen ($14 million), dwindling from 28.5 billion yen ($240.3 million) in the same period the previous year, according to the Tokyo-based manufacturer.

An extra cost of 51 billion yen ($429 million) related to a global recall of 9.6 million Sony laptop batteries was a major factor behind the sharp drop in profit, the report said.

The report said almost every major laptop maker in the world, including Dell, Apple Computer and Lenovo, had announced recalls of Sony lithium-ion batteries that could overheat and burst into flames.

The recall, which had tarnished Sony's brand image as a longtime maker of icon products such as the Walkman portable player and PlayStation video game machine, offset the lift that Sony's books got from an 8% rise in July-September sales to 1.85 trillion yen ($15.6 billion) from 1.7 trillion yen ($14.3 billion) a year earlier.

Sony reported a 43.5 billion yen ($366 million) operating loss in its gaming division because of charges related to the preparation for the next-generation PlayStation 3 console, set to go on sale in the US and Japan next month, the report said.