Thailand's top listed television broadcaster, BEC World BEC.BK, said on Monday it expected its 2009 net profit to be lower than the 2.8 billion baht ($84 million) earned in 2008 due to the weak economy.

Its financial performance in the first nine months was hit by the economy, while a pick-up in the fourth quarter was not strong enough to boost earnings for the whole year, financial chief Chatchai Thiamtong told reporters.

Our nine-month performance was a drag and we are falling short by about 260 million baht from a profit that would be equal to last year's, Chatchai said.

In the first nine months of 2009, the company posted a net profit of 1.89 billion baht, down 12 percent.

The company was expected to post a 2009 net profit of 2.6 billion baht, down 7 percent from a year earlier, according to 15 analysts polled by Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Chatchai expected 2010 revenue would be higher than this year since the economic recovery should help boost advertising revenue.

On Monday, BEC shares closed down 2.25 percent at 21.70 baht, while the overall Thai stock market was up 1.28 percent.

($1=33.19 Baht)

(Reporting by Pisit Changplayngam; Writing by Khettiya Jittapong; Editing by Alan Raybould)