The largest South Korean automaker reported – just as analysts suspected – a record decline in its third-quarter net profit, with the 29% fall the biggest in more than six quarters.
The firm, the world’s fifth-largest carmaker together with affiliate Kia Motors, has been impacted by the slowing sales increase across key markets and by a rising local currency that negatively affected exports. The company has said net profit for the July to September quarter has reached 1.52 trillion Korean won (896.8 million pounds), slightly below the already lowered average analyst expectations of 1.79 trillion won. Hyundai also tried to ease investor worries by predicting fourth-quarter earnings would be buoyed by the reverting won/dollar exchange rate and better sales from new model introductions.
The automaker also announced its intention to raise dividends and also premiering an interim dividend, according to President Lee Won-hee, in what looks like a move to conciliate the investors angered by the massive $10 billion deal to acquire a prized Seoul property in the sprawling Gangnam district.
After hitting the lowest level in four years yesterday, the news about the third-quarter earnings and the dividend raise prompted a 4% rally of the share pricing. Hyundai has been this year the worst performer among global automakers, as the company’s stock has lost 32% of its value, mostly after last month’s Seoul land deal was announced.