Toyota rebounds to post stronger-than-expected profit
UPDATED @ 03:09:24 PM 03-08-2012
TOKYO, Aug 3 — Toyota Motor Corp today posted its largest quarterly operating profit in four years and raised its 2012 global sales target on the strength of demand for cars like the Camry and Prius in key markets such as the United States and Japan.
The world’s top automaker reported an operating profit of ¥353 billion (RM13.53 billion), from a loss a year ago, a better-than-expected result that underscored its rebound from the natural disasters that blighted 2011.
Toyota, which regained its crown as the world’s best-selling automaker in the first half of 2012, said it now expects to sell 9.76 million cars and light trucks globally in 2012. That was up almost two per cent from its previous forecast.
The automaker posted a quarterly operating profit of ¥353 billion, compared with a ¥108 billion loss a year ago when production was disrupted by the March earthquake in Japan.
The profit for the quarter ending in June was higher than the average estimate of ¥314.1 billion based on eight analysts polled by Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
In its single biggest and most profitable market, the US, Toyota sales have snapped higher by 28 per cent through July, the biggest gain for any major automaker.
The US sales gains have been combined with higher transaction prices, reflecting strong demand for the Prius hybrid and the Camry sedan, the top-selling car in the US.
Toyota said it now expects to sell 2.38 million vehicles in North America in 2012, an upward revision of just over one per cent to its earlier forecast.
The strong performance by Toyota marked a contrast with its closest Japanese rivals.
Both Nissan and Honda, which released their quarterly earnings in late July, underperformed analyst expectations, citing the drag from the strong yen and costly sales incentives as they tried to shift older models before putting revamped models on sale.
Shares in Toyota have fallen nearly 15 per cent in the financial year that began in April. Today, they ended at ¥3,065, up less than one per cent but outperforming the wider market, which fell more than one per cent. — Reuters