Goldman Sachs urges caution on Wintek’s 4th-quarter profit


TAIPEI — Goldman Sachs has warned investors that record sales by Taiwan’s Wintek Corp. over the past two months may not translate into significantly higher earnings for the touch panel maker.

In a report dated Jan. 2, Goldman Sachs said Wintek’s preliminary fourth-quarter sales projection of NT$26 billion was 18 percent above the brokerage’s estimate given stronger-than-expected iPhone shipments.

But the profit contribution of the boost in sales will be limited, Goldman Sachs said, because the record revenue was generated from low-margin iPhone touch panels, and shipments of more profitable tablet computer panels were down 14 percent from 8.1 million units in the third quarter.

“The 2011 fourth-quarter earnings revision was mainly driven by lower margin and higher operating expense from increasing small-sized touch panels,” the brokerage said.