Thu, Nov 06, 2014 - Page 15 News List

Toyota increases annual earnings forecast

PROFIT AND SALES:The world’s No. 1 automaker raised its annual profit projection to ¥2 trillion and raised its annual sales forecast to ¥26.5 trillion

AP, TOKYO

People look at Toyota Motor vehicles at the automaker’s showroom in Tokyo yesterday.

Photo: AFP

Toyota Motor Corp raised its annual earnings forecast after posting a 23 percent jump in quarterly profit yesterday as a favorable exchange rate added to the momentum of the Japanese automaker’s sales growth.

Toyota’s fiscal second-quarter profit was a better-than-expected ¥539 billion (US$4.7 billion), up from ¥438 billion the same period the previous year. Analysts surveyed by FactSet had expected about ¥500 billion in quarterly profit.

Quarterly sales grew 4 percent to ¥6.55 trillion as a weak yen boosted the value of overseas revenue.

The US dollar was trading at about 100 yen last year, but has soared lately, trading yesterday at about ¥114. Toyota is expecting the US dollar to average ¥104 for the fiscal year.

Toyota, which makes the Prius hybrid, Camry sedan and Lexus luxury model, said the favorable exchange rate added ¥40 billion to operating profit last quarter.

Unlike other Japanese automakers, which have worked hard to move production abroad to reduce the risks of a fluctuating yen, Toyota has kept much of its production in Japan, partly because of political pressures on it, as a major manufacturer, to help Japan Inc. That is now paying off in a big way.

Toyota, the world’s top-selling automaker, raised its profit projection for the year through March next year to ¥2 trillion. That would be an increase of 10 percent from the previous year. It previously forecast ¥1.78 trillion in annual profit.

Toyota raised its annual sales forecast to ¥26.5 trillion from ¥25.7 trillion, which was about what it recorded in the last fiscal year.

The rosier projections are despite a lowered forecast for unit sales, to 9.05 million vehicles, down from the previous projection of 9.1 million vehicles, for the fiscal year.

Sales are languishing in the once booming market of China. Japan has taken a hit after the consumption tax was raised in April. However, Toyota sales are expected to hold up in the US, Europe, South America and Africa.

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