Ford reported $1.6-billion profit for the third-quarter, less than in 2011, but an amazing 12% profit margin in North America, making up for the loss in Europe.
“This is the third quarter in a row where we earned over $2 billion ($2.3 billion in North America) and the third quarter in a row with an operating margin over 10%,” said Chief Financial Officer Bob Shanks.
Analysts predict the automaker will not be able to do better in the fourth quarter, due to increased costs of promoting and launching new models, such as C-Max, Ford Fusion and Lincoln MKZ, and also costs for adding 400,000 more units in the US. Alan Mulally, Ford’s CEO, said the automaker will not manage to match profits or market share reached in 2011, and a factor contributing to this is Ford Credit, whose profits fell $188 million in the quarter to $393 million.
Ford managed to gain $800 million from North and South America by increasing the price of vehicles, and $26 million from Europe, competing with other automakers which offered heavy discounts. Ford is decided to restore profitability in Europe, last week announcing it will close two plants in Belgium and the UK beginning with next year.