Beijing: China Mobile, the world’s largest mobile carrier by subscribers, posted a 1.6% drop in quarterly profit on Thursday, hurt by a slow economy, weak 3G rollout and rising competition.
The company, along with China Unicom and China Telecom, smaller rivals that compete with a full range of services after last year’s industry restructuring -- are aggressively moving into poorer rural areas as urban markets become saturated.
China Mobile’s second-quarter net profit was 30.1 billion yuan ($4.4 billion) versus a consensus forecast of 31.36 billion yuan, according to Reuters calculations based on previously reported figures.
That compared with a restated profit of 30.6 billion yuan for the second quarter of 2008.
China Mobile posted a first-half profit of 55.3 billion yuan, lagging a consensus forecast of 56.56 billion yuan from a Reuters poll of eight analysts.
China Mobile shares rose 15% during the second quarter, lagging a 23.9% gain by China Unicom and a 20.6% rise by China Telecom shares.
All three trailed the 35.8% surge on Hong Kong’s China Enterprises Index during the same period.