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Samsung predicts record operating profit of $9.3B in Q3

Electronics giant may benefit from a recovery in the semiconductor sector, allaying smartphone market saturation fears.

Samsung expects to post a record operating profit of 10.1 trillion won ($9.3 billion) in the third quarter, as an expected rebound in its semiconductor business offsets smartphone market saturation fears.

In guidance issued Thursday ahead of a full financial statement later this month, the electronics giant said its operating profit would come in between 9.9 trillion and 10.3 trillion won ($9.2 billion and $9.6 billion) for the three-month period that ended in September, an increase of 5 percent over the previous quarter and about 24 percent from the year-ago period.

The company's third-quarter estimates are slightly better than the 9.96 trillion won consensus forecast by a Thomson Reuters poll of analysts.

Samsung's operating profit for the second quarter increased 47 percent over the same period in 2012. However, the operating profit from Samsung's mobile division, which accounts for two-thirds of its revenue, declined 3.5 percent from the previous quarter, leading some analysts to cut their sales forecasts for Samsung's flagship Galaxy S4 smartphone.

However, the company's semiconductor business, which has suffered from a global glut of chips, will likely benefit from a recent market rally.

"Stronger memory prices, made even better with the Wuxi DRAM (dynamic random access memory) fab fire, are driving Samsung's next leg of profit growth," Bernstein analyst Mark Newman said, according to Reuters.