Nokia beats expectations as its smartphone sends profits soaring

TOP mobile phone maker Nokia’s fourth-quarter sales and profits, reported yesterday, beat expectations as it regained market share in smartphones, sending its stock price 14 per cent higher.

The strong results cap an otherwise tough year for Nokia and the cellphone industry, which have been hammered as consumers cut spending in the recession.

Nokia’s underlying fourth-quarter earnings per share fell slightly from a year ago to €0.25, but still beat consensus expectations, which ranged from €0.15 to 0.24.

Nokia repeated its forecast for the handset market to grow 10 per cent in 2010 from a year ago. “This quarter gives us good momentum to build for in 2010,” Nokia chief financial officer Timo Ihamuotila said.