DETROIT -- Four North American auto parts suppliers announced financial projections and updates to Wall Street on Thursday.
American Axle & Manufacturing Holdings Inc., of Detroit, said its backlog of new and incremental business from 2006 through 2012 is estimated at $1.4 billion.
American Axle expects to report net earnings of about $56 million, or $1.10 a share, for 2005. The results include a charge of about $9 million related to lump-sum voluntary severance payments accepted by about 160 hourly workers at the end of 2005. Axle said earnings for 2006 should improve to between $1.20 and $1.30 a share.
Separately, the company said it would build a driveline system plant near Shanghai to begin production in late 2006. It will break ground on the 175,000-square-foot plant in the spring.
In other supplier news Thursday:
"The second half of the year will be strong," he said. "We'll focus on things that made us good. We'll do what's right for our shareholders, and we will continue to grow."
The company said on Wednesday that it is taking a $342 million write-down of its interior trim unit, which is being combined with a joint venture headed by New York billionaire Wilbur Ross.
In a report issued Thursday, Merrill Lynch analyst John Murphy praised Magna's business plan but still rated the stock a "neutral" in the short term.
He wrote: "Although we think Magna is one of the best operators in the auto industry, with proprietary technology and a solid balance sheet, we believe that industry headwinds will keep a lid on results and the stock in the near-term."
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