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Toyota Losing Money?

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Just read in my newest MT that Toyota is on the way to having it's first fiscal year lose. Speculating around -$1.66 billion. Not near the rate of the domestics, but goes to show you that they are having the same issues in today's market.

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Looks like a bit more than "just" a billion...


TOKYO/PARIS (Reuters) – Toyota, the world's top carmaker, said its losses were ballooning as world car sales slid while truckmaker Volvo swung to a fourth quarter loss and Italy readied aid for the ailing industry.

A sudden collapse in consumer demand last year battered automakers who were forced to cut production and shed jobs leaving the sector and its related industries reeling.

Governments have swung into action, preparing aid packages to help out their struggling car sectors.

In Italy on Friday, the government approved a decree which included incentives worth more than 1,500 euros for trading in cars that were more than 10 years old and buying a new one.

Toyota Motor Corp operating loss for the year to end-March would be 450 billion yen ($4.95 billion), three times the loss it had forecast just six weeks ago.

German's BMW, meanwhile, provided a rare glimmer of hope and shares rose as it earned a clear profit in 2008 with fourth-quarter sales beating expectations.

But automobile division revenues were down 9.4 percent for the full year.

Fellow German car manufacturer Volkswagen said its January vehicle sales plunged a fifth according to a source close to Europe's biggest auto maker.

Toyota's sales fell 34 percent last month in the United States, its biggest market, and 23 percent in Japan, as recession gripped major economies.

"This is absolutely awful. The earnings situation has obviously deteriorated since last October when the company's stock price plunged," said Yoshinori Nagano, chief strategist at Daiwa Asset Management in Tokyo.

Toyota posted an operating loss of 360.5 billion yen for October-December. The Japanese firm has already let most temporary workers go, and could cut full-time jobs in Britain and North America, a company source said.

Predicting further pain for the world auto industry, Moody's Investors cut its credit rating on Toyota for the first time in a decade.

In Europe, world-number two truck maker Volvo said it slipped to a surprise operating loss in the fourth quarter amid plunging demand and warned that key markets were likely to fall further this year. But shares rose on relief the company was still able to generate cash.


Toyota's grim forecast came as U.S. parts suppliers pressed for government aid, and as President Barack Obama urged swift passage of a $900 billion stimulus package for the world's largest economy.

In the U.S., where carmakers have been bailed out by the government, the focus shifted to the auto supply industry.

This sector employs more people directly than auto manufacturers and is in talks with the U.S. Treasury to secure emergency funding to avoid a wave of bankruptcies.

The auto suppliers have requested some $25 billion in assistance, an amount that would double the U.S. government's commitment to the auto sector at a time when sales are at their lowest since the early 1980s.

"The key now is whether consumers in America will be able to start securing loans again," Daiwa's Nagano said.

"Slumping sales due to the dismal state of the economy may be inevitable, but another big problem today is that consumers who can normally get loans can't get them."

Bob McKenna, president of the Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association warned that the parts industry has been shut off from credit at a time when orders from automakers are shrinking.

Major problems at auto suppliers could quickly cripple or shut down car and truck production.

"Without immediate credit availability, an onslaught of supplier company bankruptcies is inevitable in the coming weeks and months, which would have a devastating, long-term effect on the U.S. economy," McKenna said in a statement.

GM itself is restructuring under a $13.4 billion government bailout, and along with Chrysler LLC is racing to meet a February 17 deadline to show U.S. officials they can be made viable after receiving massive public aid.

In South Korea, cash-strapped SUV maker Ssangyong Motor Co secured protection from creditors, but may struggle to revive in the near term or find new owners after it posted four loss-making quarters on plunging sales.

Ssangyong, which employs 7,100, is South Korea's first big corporate casualty as the global recession batters Asia's key export markets.

Difficulties with parts suppliers prompted Russian carmaker AvtoVAZ, which is 25 percent-owned by Renault, to halt its assembly line indefinitely, the Kommersant newspaper said, quoting AvtoVAZ's president.

In France, Citigroup downgraded tire maker Michelin to sell from hold.

(Additional reporting by Reuters bureaux worldwide)

(Writing by Kim Coghill and Helen Massy-Beresford; Editing by Ian Geoghegan, Marcel Michelson and Mike Nesbit)

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Toyota Motor Corp operating loss for the year to end-March would be 450 billion yen ($4.95 billion), three times the loss it had forecast just six weeks ago.

:spit: :spit: :mind-blowing: :mind-blowing: :mind-blowing: :mind-blowing:

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