Toyota increased its operating profit target for the financial year ending March 2014, as exports have become more profitable thanks to the weak yen.
Toyota, which is the best-selling automaker in the world, said it expects to reach an annual profit of 1.94 trillion yen ($19.55 billion), an increase from the previously announced target of 1.8 trillion yen. The new target will help Toyota get closer to the record profit figure of 2.27 trillion it set in March 2008. Analysts predict that the Japanese automaker will reach a profit close to 2.27 trillion yen.
“Our profitability has improved steadily compared to what it was before the Lehman shock,” said Toyota Managing Officer Takuo Sasaki.
Toyota sold in the US 1.3 million vehicles during the first seven months of the year, an increase of 8% compared with the same period last year. Last month sales increased 17% thanks to high demand for the RAV4 and the Avalon. The US is the automaker’s largest market and it accounts for almost a quarter of the company’s worldwide sales.
Toyota’s sales in Japan fell 12.7% as demand dropped after the government ended green car subsidies in 2012. Although growth in Southeast Asia is slower than expected, the weak yen makes exports profitable. Today, August 2nd, Toyota reported an operating profit up 87.9% to 663.4 billion yen ($6.69 billion) for the second quarter, compared with analysts’ estimate of 649 billion yen.