South Korean tech giant Samsung Electronics on Thursday said its third-quarter operating profits were down 31.39 percent year-on-year after a global economic downturn hit demand for consumer electronics.
Earnings in its crucial memory chips division were down, the company said in a statement, adding that "demand for consumer products remained weak".
The results are the first year-on-year decline in profit in nearly three years for Samsung Electronics, the world's biggest smartphone maker.
But the company said it had seen an increase in sales, which were up by 3.79 percent from the same period last year to 76 trillion won.
The world's biggest memory-chip maker is the flagship subsidiary of the giant Samsung group, by far the largest of the family-controlled empires known as chaebols that dominate business in South Korea, Asia's fourth-largest economy.
The conglomerate is crucial to the country's economic health -- its overall turnover is equivalent to a fifth of the national gross domestic product.
Until the second quarter of this year, Samsung, along with other tech companies, significantly benefitted from strong demand for electronic devices -- as well as chips that power them -- during the pandemic.