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Japanese bank eyes profit this fiscal year

MITSUBISHI UFJ Financial Group Inc sank into losses for the fiscal year ended March 31, battered by writedowns on securities amid a market plunge, but Japan's top bank said yesterday it expects to return to profit this fiscal year.

Last week, Japan's two other megabanks, Mizuho Financial Group Inc, and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group Inc, said they tumbled into steep annual losses, hit by bad loans and plunging share prices. They also see a profit this fiscal year.

Tokyo-based Mitsubishi UFJ reported a group net loss of 256.95 billion yen (US$2.6 billion) for the fiscal year ended March 31, a reversal from 636.62 billion yen profit in the previous year. It was the group's first red ink since its launch in 2005, from the merger of Japanese banks.

The result was in line with the bank's revised projection announced earlier this month, when it lowered its forecast to losses from a small profit.

Mitsubishi UFJ said it expects a 300 billion yen profit for the fiscal year through March 2010.


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