TAIPEI, March 30 (Reuters) - Taiwan's Foxconn, the world's largest contract electronics maker and a key Apple Inc supplier, reported on Friday 4.2 percent growth in fourth quarter net profit from a year ago, defying expectations for a decline.
Net profit in the final three months of 2017 reached T$71.66 billion ($2.46 billion), up from T$68.77 billion in the fourth quarter of 2016, according to a Reuters calculation based on the full year 2017 results of Foxconn, known formally as Hon Hai Precision Industry Co.
It was well ahead of the T$60.75 billion forecast by eight analysts polled by Thomson Reuters SmartEstimates.
For 2017 as a whole, Foxconn's net profit totalled T$138.7 billion, down 6.7 percent from 2016, the company said in a filing to the Taiwan Stock Exchange. ($1 = 29.1030 Taiwan dollars) (Reporting by Twinnie Siu and Meg Shen; Editing by Jacqueline Wong and Peter Graff)