Mitsubishi lifts profit outlook on weakening yen

Rows of Mitsubishi Mirage vehicles are parked on a pier prior to their shipment to Japan at the company's facilities in Laem Chabang, Thailand, in July 2012. The automaker said Friday its profit outlook has been helped by improvements in its product mix in Thailand.

Photo credit: BLOOMBERG
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TOKYO (Reuters) -- Mitsubishi Motors Corp. lifted its operating profit forecast for this financial year by 20 percent to 120 billion yen ($1.2 billion) on Friday, helped by a weakening yen, cost cuts and strong sales of the Outlander SUV plug-in hybrid.

The carmaker, despite a decline in overall sales, also raised its net profit outlook for the financial year ending in March 2014 by 23 percent to 100 billion yen.

The company said it will hold an extraordinary shareholders' meeting on Dec. 26 to prepare for a public share offering as a part of its plan to pay back its top shareholders for support in a 2004 bailout.

A primary reason for the improved forecasts is the yen, which has dropped further against the dollar since the company's earnings projections in late October, when yen-weakening “Abenomics” was just a concept, the Japan Times said.

The automaker also said its profits have been helped by improvements in its product mix in Thailand.

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