FINAL ASSEMBLY

Ghosn is glum on prices, U.S. sales prospects

Carlos Ghosn: A long slump
Carlos Ghosn's grim outlook: Raw material and sticker prices are going up, and U.S. sales will stay down for quite a while.

The Nissan president said there is "no doubt" higher sticker prices are around the corner as raw material costs soar. He also warned that the U.S. slump would run through 2009.

The pessimistic outlook came last week when Ghosn said his company expects a 30.5 percent drop in operating profit this year, due in part to rising costs of steel and oil.

"You cannot continue to say, 'All my raw materials are increasing, all the components of my car are increasing, but I'm not going to increase prices,' " Ghosn said. "You're going to have significant inflation in cars. No doubt about it."

Ghosn described 2008 as a "tough year for the entire industry" and added: Unfortunately also we are not seeing a revival in 2009. We're seeing a couple of years at a very low level."

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