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Nokia lowers financial outlook to negative figures

Blames a competitive industry and business transition

Nokia has lowered its financial outlook for the first and second quarter causing its share value to plummet.

The smartphone maker said that it now expects an operating margin for the first quarter of negative three percent. It previously anticipated it would break even and has said the outlook for the second quarter to be "similar to or below" the first.

According to the BBC the news caused a big drop in Nokia shares of 17 percent, pushing value down to its lowest level since before 2000.

Nokia said that a number of factors have had a negative effect on its devices and services business during the first quarter of the year. These included 'competitive industry dynamics', particularly in India, the Middle East and Africa and China, and gross margin declines.

The news comes days after the firm launched its Lumia 900 smartphone which was hit by a software bug affecting the phone's connectivity.

Stephen Elop, President and CEO of Nokia said: "Our disappointing Devices & Services first quarter 2012 financial results and outlook for the second quarter 2012 illustrates that our Devices & Services business continues to be in the midst of transition,"

"Within our Smart Devices business unit, we have established early momentum with Lumia, and we are increasing our investments in Lumia to achieve market success." he added.

Looking forward Nokia will focus on accelerating sales of its Lumia devices and lowering the company's cost structure. It is also taking 'tactical pricing actions' and plans to bring new products to market in the second quarter.

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