Sun amends Q4 figures, ends up with US$1.04 billion loss

A US$1.051 billion noncash charge recognized yesterday by Sun Microsystems Inc. for its fourth quarter of fiscal 2003 turned what had been US$12 million in net income for the period into a US$1.039 billion net loss.

In an announcement, Sun said the amended figures are the result of an increase in a valuation allowance for the company’s net deferred tax assets.

The change affects the quarter that ended June 30. Sun originally announced net income of US$12 million, or zero cents per share, for that quarter, but with the revised figures, the net loss per share for that period is now listed at US$0.32 cents per share.

Sun said it expects a US$0.07 to US$0.10 loss per share in its first quarter of fiscal 2004, including a tax provision of about US$34 million, or US$0.01 per share, in what has been a “particularly difficult quarter for the company due in part to intense market and competitive dynamics.”

On July 22, Sun had reported revenue of US$11.43 billion for fiscal 2003, down 8.5 per cent from US$12.5 billion the year before.

The announcement of the change in Sun’s financial picture comes less than two weeks after Sun announced that it’s laying off about 1,080 workers, or three per cent of its worldwide workforce, which stood at 36,068 as of the end of June. The company said the layoffs are needed to meet its fiscal 2004 goals.

It was the third round of layoffs for the company since October 2001, when it reduced its workforce by 3,900. Last November, it cut another 4,400 jobs.