In an unscheduled trading statement made yesterday, Ericsson surprised the financial community by reporting that gross margins are expected to improve above the level of 41.6% attained in 4Q 2003. Previously the company had stated that first quarter margins could fall on the previous three months. ‘Better than anticipated benefits of cost of sales reduction activities’ was the reason behind the improved results, a result of the company’s harsh cost-cutting programme which has seen its workforce reduced to close to 50,000.
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