Ford 4Q profit beats forecasts; revenue up 4%

SHARE Ford 4Q profit beats forecasts; revenue up 4%

DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) — Ford Motor Co. beat Wall Street’s forecasts for fourth-quarter and full-year profits thanks to strong performances in North America and Asia.

The Dearborn, Mich.-based automaker earned $3 billion, or 74 cents per share, in the final quarter of 2013, but that was largely because of a one-time tax gain. Excluding the gain, net income was 31 cents per share, topping analysts’ forecast of 27 cents, according to FactSet.

Fourth-quarter revenue rose 3.5 percent to $37.6 billion. Ford shares were up 60 cents, or nearly 4 percent, to $16.31 in premarket trading.

For the full year, Ford earned $7.2 billion, or $1.76 per share. Without one-time items, including a pension buyout, the company earned $8.56 billion, or $1.62 per share, beating analysts’ forecasts.

Full-year revenue rose 10 percent to $146.9 billion.

Because of Ford’s strong annual profit, Ford’s 47,000 hourly workers will get about $8,800 each in profit sharing payments on March 13, the company said.

For the full year, Ford posted record profits in North America and its Asia Pacific Africa unit. The company said it broke even in South America, and its loss was lower in Europe than last year.

The company repeated its outlook for 2014, saying that it expects pretax profits to be between $7 billion and $8 billion. That’s lower than last year, when it made $8.6 billion before taxes. Ford expects revenue from selling cars to be about the same as 2013, but warned that its operating margin and cash flow will be lower.

Ford’s market share grew in every region except Europe last year. Its sales jumped 49 percent to more than 935,000 in China thanks to new vehicles like the EcoSport and Kuga SUVs. In the U.S., sales rose 11.7 percent on strong demand for the F-Series pickup. Ford was the only major automaker to see double-digit U.S. sales gains.

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