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Japan-Update

Unicharm seen beating profit forecast on Asian sales

Diaper maker's shift to pricier products has improved profitability

Sales of Unicharm's high-priced Moony diapers are growing in China.

TOKYO -- Japanese sanitary goods maker Unicharm is expected to report a 3% gain in group operating profit to 37.5 billion yen ($328 million) for the six months ended in June, topping its 34 billion yen estimate on better-than-expected sales of high-priced products in other parts of Asia.

Unicharm switched to International Financial Reporting Standards starting this fiscal year ending in December. The standards require that impairment losses, often unrelated to a company's core operations, be reflected in operating profit. Unicharm therefore also releases core operating profit -- gross profit minus selling and administrative expenses -- as another earnings indicator for its main businesses. 

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