TOKYO - Nissan Motor Co. last week slashed its outlook for worldwide net profit in the fiscal year ended March 31 by nearly 80 percent, citing weaker sales at home and in North America and losses on its stock portfolio.
Nissan predicted consolidated net profit, including earnings of its overseas affiliates, will be off 79.4 percent from a year earlier to ¥16 billion, or about $123.1 million at current exchange rates.
Nissan also said parent-company net income will be down 68 percent from a year earlier to $126.9 million, well off from the forecast of $423.1 million that Nissan issued last November.
The cuts mainly reflect an appraisal loss of $387.7 million on Nissan's portfolio. Because marketable securities are carried on Japanese companies' books at the lower of cost or current market price, the Japanese stock market's plunge over the past year forced Nissan to write down the value of its stock holdings.
But Bloomberg News Service also quoted Nissan as saying that North American operations lost ¥45 billion, or about $341 million, in the just-ended fiscal year. The report could not be confirmed, however.
In addition to the paper losses, Nissan said its group earnings were pulled down by weak sales in Japan, which hurt Nissan-owned dealers in Japan. Overseas, it said that cost-cutting efforts were bearing fruit in Europe, but a drop in sales hurt North American results.
Separately, Mazda Motor Corp. said it posted an appraisal loss of $151.5 million on its stock portfolio. It did not revise its forecast of parent-company net income of $76.9 million, however.