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Battery maker TDK scales new heights on iPhone buzz

Stock extends winning streak to nine sessions

Investors are snapping up shares in Apple suppliers in anticipation of a new iPhone launch, which usually happens in September.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- TDK shares rose for the ninth straight session here on Tuesday, as investors bet on the electronic components maker to make big bucks from supplying batteries to a new iPhone expected to be released next month.

TDK has been attracting investors as a manufacturer of capacitors, whose demand is growing worldwide, but is gaining renewed interest lately as a battery supplier to Apple.

Stock in the Tokyo-based company hit a year-to-date high of 12,400 yen before closing up 1% at 12,150 yen. The shares have achieved their longest winning streak in 25 months.

Apple usually releases its new iPhone in September, and TDK also has said it expects to sell more batteries to the U.S. tech company in the July-September quarter.

"The new iPhone will likely have a bigger screen, which will require bigger, more expensive batteries," said Yasuo Imanaka of Rakuten Securities Economic Research Institute.

TDK earned 35% of total sales last fiscal year from batteries and its other energy application products. Group operating profit jumped 53% on the year to 25.4 billion yen ($229 million) in April-June, beating projections thanks to demand from Chinese smartphones and laptop makers. The new iPhone is only expected to lift sales.

The Japanese company's shares have performed well since June, when market players homed in on a growing demand for multilayered ceramic capacitors used in automobiles and industrial machinery -- another of TDK's mainstay products.

Other stocks benefit from growing anticipation for the new iPhone as well. Alps Electric, which supplies camera parts to Apple, is approaching its year-to-date high. Murata Manufacturing, believed to be supplying multilayered ceramic capacitors, has surged 12% since a recent low marked on Aug. 16.

Shares in Japan Display also are rising, and the manufacturer is expected to turn an operating profit in September when it starts ramping up shipments of screens to Apple.

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