Toyota yesterday said its full-year net profit more than tripled to US$9.7 billion, with the world’s largest automaker adding that it was on track for more soaring profits in the current fiscal year.
The rosy annual profit underscores the recovery among Japan’s major automakers after the 2011 quake-tsunami disaster devastated sales and production, and highlights strong demand in the key Asian and US markets.
The yen, which has lost about one-fifth of its value against the US dollar since November last year, has also helped, boosting Japanese firms’ competitiveness overseas and jacking up the value of their repatriated foreign income.
The declining yen was among the factors cited by Toyota for its profit jump, after rival domestic automaker Honda said its net profit for the year to March soared 73.6 percent thanks to robust overseas sales, a weaker yen and cost cutting.
Toyota yesterday said it booked a net profit of ￥962.1 billion (US$9.7 billion) in the fiscal year to March, up from ￥283.5 billion a year earlier, on sales of ￥22 trillion, an increase of 18.7 percent on-year.
The firm, which last year overtook General Motors to regain the title of world’s biggest automaker, also said it expected to earn a net profit of ￥1.37 trillion for the fiscal year ending March next year.
“We experienced increased sales of our vehicles mainly in North America and Asia,” Toyota president Akio Toyoda said, also pointing to “company-wide profit improvement activities. The world’s new car demand is expected to grow going forward, driven by the recovery of the US market and the development of the emerging markets.”
Global vehicle sales hit 8.87 million units in the year to March, Toyota said, despite nearly flat results from recession-riddled Europe.
The Camry and Corolla maker added that vehicle sales in the current fiscal year were on track to hit 9.1 million units.
Toyota shares finished 1.38 percent higher to ￥5,840 in Tokyo yesterday. Its results were published after markets closed.