Toyota counts on N.A. to offset slips elsewhere
TOKYO -- Toyota Motor Corp. said sharply higher profits in North America paced strong earnings globally in the quarter that ended Sept. 30.
It lifted its profit forecast for the current fiscal year that will end March 31, 2013, but trimmed its forecast for higher revenues, citing declining sales in China and Europe.
The fiscal second-quarter results and the forecast for the full fiscal year show the importance of the North American market to Toyota.
"In North America, the market is continuing to recover," Executive Vice President Satoshi Ozawa said. "It's a very good market for Toyota."
In the current fiscal year, Toyota now says, North American sales will total 2.4 million vehicles, up from Toyota's earlier forecast of 2.38 million vehicles and up 28 percent from the 1.9 million sold in the prior fiscal year.
The outlook means North America will extend its lead over Japan as the company's biggest market. Toyota is predicting Japan sales of 2.25 million in the current fiscal year.
With U.S. industrywide sales running at an annual pace of more than 14 million units, Toyota is poised to surpass annual sales of 2 million vehicles there, Ozawa predicted. He did not specify whether that was for the calendar or fiscal year. In 2011, Toyota's U.S. sales, constrained by the earthquake and tsunami in Japan, fell 7 percent to 1,644,660.
In the three months that ended Sept. 30, global net income tripled to ¥257.9 billion ($3.31 billion), on an 18 percent rise in revenues to $69.45 billion.
In North America, revenues climbed 34 percent to $18.63 billion, and operating profit nearly doubled to $833.1 million. North American unit sales climbed 45 percent to 598,000 units, compared with 413,000 a year earlier.
With U.S. demand rebounding and Toyota's supply chain back to normal, Japan's biggest carmaker increased North American production 42 percent to 391,000 vehicles in the quarter.
Globally, Toyota shaved its sales outlook to 8.75 million vehicles, from an earlier target of 8.8 million. The new goal still represents a 19 percent increase over 7.4 million in worldwide sales a year earlier.
|Toyota lifts profit outlook|
|New Forecast||Prior Forecast||Actual|
|year to 3-31-13||year to 3-31-13||year to 3-31-12|
|Revenue||$273.4 billion||$282.4 billion||$238.56 billion|
|Operating profit||$13.5 billion||$12.8 billion||$4.56 billion|
|Net income||$10.01 billion||$9.76 billion||$3.64 billion|
|Unit sales||8.75 million||8.8 million||7.4 million|
|Note: Results translated at an exchange rate of $1 = ¥77.90, the rate on Sept. 30, the last day of the fiscal quarter. Source: Toyota Motor Corp.|
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