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Honda’s quarterly profit slides 7%

Kyodo

Honda Motor Co. said Wednesday its group net profit fell 7.0 percent from a year earlier to ¥122.50 billion in the April-June quarter, due to losses stemming from foreign exchange contracts.

Consolidated operating profit rose 5.1 percent to ¥184.96 billion on favorable effects of the yen’s recent fall, which boosted export competitiveness, as well as cost-cutting efforts, the company said. Sales increased 16.3 percent to ¥2.83 trillion.

Honda’s group global sales volume in the three-month period stayed flat at around 999,000 vehicles. Of the total, sales in Asia excluding Japan increased 8.8 percent to 285,000 vehicles, due in part to robust sales in Thailand, India and Indonesia.

Despite concerns about a slowdown in Asian emerging economies, Honda Executive Vice President Tetsuo Iwamura said that the automaker is “sure that demand in emerging economies, especially for motorcycles, will continue to grow down the road.”

Domestic sales dropped 24.3 percent to 140,000 vehicles, affected by the termination last September of the government subsidy program for the purchase of environmentally friendly cars.

In North America, Honda’s biggest market, car sales rose 2.0 percent to 459,000 vehicles.

The automaker left unchanged its sales target for the full business year through next March, expecting to sell 4.43 million vehicles worldwide.