Nissan Motor Co. almost doubled its operating profit for the fiscal third quarter ended December 2014 to JPY155.97 billion ($1.3 billion) from JPY78.74 billion ($656.2 million) in the same period a year prior. The Japanese saw its net income for the quarter surge 21 percent to JPY101.81 billion ($848.9 million), while revenue jumped 17 percent to JPY2.944 trillion ($24.55 billion).
This comes despite Nissan selling only 1.6 percent more vehicles globally in the period to 1.254 million vehicles. Nissan’s financial results for the financial first quarter were primarily boosted by surging demand in North America and a weakening yen. A weak Japanese currency makes earnings made abroad more valuable when repatriated in Japan.
Foreign exchange rate windfalls brought in JPY41.8 billion ($348.5 million) in the first nine months of Nissan’s fiscal year. According to Corporate Vice President Joji Tagawa, Nissan’s profits were underpinned by better discipline with incentives in the United States and brisk sales of vehicles like the Rogue crossover.
Tagawa remarked that Nissan is not participating in a “competition that sacrifices profits,” adding that in 2014, the carmaker was finally able to generate reasonable profitability. The carmaker saw its sales in North America surge 8.9 percent to 441,000 vehicles in the fiscal quarter ended Dec. 31, 2014, and its volume in Europe jump 23 percent to 200,000 units.
Nissan, however, logged a 16-percent drop in sales in Japan to 126,000 vehicles, a 12-percent decline in China. Expecting weaker demand in Japan, China and Europe, Nissan has cut its global sales forecast by 150,000 vehicles to 5.3 million vehicles for the current fiscal year ending March 31, 2015, although that means a 2.2-percent jump over the previous fiscal year (5.188 million vehicles).
In Europe, Nissan trim its sales expectation by 40,000 vehicles to 740,000. But for North America, Nissan is seeing better things, even hiking its sales forecast to 1.82 million vehicles – reflecting a 10-percent jump from the previous year. According to Tagawa, additional volume will come from Canada and Mexico.