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Losses and sales drop for Mitsubishi and Toyota

Two of Japan's automotive manufacturers have suffered a blow as they release figures for the fiscal year just ended, prompting fears that major Japanese car makers are about to report large losses.

Mitsubishi along with Toyota subsidiaries Hino Motors and Daihatsu Motor Co are among the first automakers to report results for the fiscal year ending in March with Honda due to release its earnings later today (Tuesday) while Toyota reports its results on May 8 and Nissan on May 12.

For Mitsubishi it marked the first net loss in three years - a loss of Y54.8billion, a huge drop from its Y34.7billion net profit just one year earlier. Much of that loss has come in the Jan-March quarter with a Y50.1billion group net loss. Its operating profit has sunk by 96 per cent to Y3.93billion with sales declining to Y1.974trillion down from Y2.682trillion.

Mitsubishi Motors President Osamu Masuko is hoping that the global markets are starting to hit the bottom and that there will be improvements. In the current financial year, Mitsubishi expects to return to profitability despite a fall in global vehicle sales.

Meanwhile, earnings at Daihatsu, in which Toyota owns a 51 per cent stake, saw its net profit fall 37 per cent to Y22.07billion with sales declining by 4.2 per cent. This marked the company's first net profit drop in seven years. In the current year, the manufacturer forecasts its net profit will fall 64 per cent to Y8.0billion and sales will drop 14 per cent.

Hino, which is Toyota's truck-making subsidiary, posted a net loss of Y61.84billion in the last fiscal year, which is a significant fall from its net profit of Y22.18billion just a year before. This marked the company's first loss on a net basis since the fiscal year ended in March 2001.

In the current year it predicts a net loss of Y24.0billion and an operating loss of Y15.0billion.

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Paul Lucas

Filed under: Mitsubishi, Toyota

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