Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F) reported a wider loss in the fourth quarter of 2019 due to the inclusion of pension and OPEB remeasurement loss. The bottom line missed analysts’ expectations while the top line exceeded consensus estimates.
Net loss was $1.7 billion or $0.42 per share wider than a loss of $0.1 billion or $0.03 per share in the previous year quarter. Adjusted earnings dropped by 60% to $0.12 per share. Revenue declined by 5% to $39.7 billion. Analysts had expected EPS of $0.15 on revenue of $36.49 billion for the fourth quarter.
Looking ahead into the full year 2020, the company expects adjusted free cash flow in the range of $2.4-3.4 billion and adjusted EBIT in the range of $5.6-6.6 billion. Adjusted earnings are anticipated to be in the range of $0.94-1.20 per share while the consensus estimates EPS of $1.26. Capital expenditures are predicted to be in the range of $6.8-7.3 billion.
For the first quarter, Ford expects adjusted EBIT to be down more than $1.1 billion from last year as a result of the continuation of higher warranty costs seen during the second half of 2019, lower vehicle volumes, lower results from Ford Credit, and higher investment in Mobility.
For the fourth quarter, adjusted earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) dropped by 67% as improved results in China and Europe more than offset by a decline in North America. Automotive EBIT plunged by 81% due to lower launch-related volumes, higher costs for new products, unfavorable currency exchange, and UAW contract-related costs.
In Europe, the company refocused its resources on three product segments: commercial vehicles, selected passenger vehicles, and iconic nameplates, such as Mustang. At the same time, the business became more efficient, announcing plans to close or sell six manufacturing plants and eliminate 12,000 positions across the region.
In South America, Ford exited the production of heavy trucks and discontinued unprofitable sedan models, closing a plant in Sao Bernardo. This has shrunk the regional workforce by more than 40% from three years ago.
In addition to Mustang Mach-E, refreshed or all-new vehicle launches planned for 2020 include F-150, featuring a first-ever hybrid-electric version; a small off-road utility vehicle; the first of 30 market-specific Ford and Lincoln vehicles in China over the next three years; and electrified versions of the Lincoln Corsair and Ford Escape/Kuga.
Ford’s rival General Motors (NYSE: GM) is expected to release its earnings results for the fourth quarter on Wednesday before the market opens. Analysts forecast almost flat earnings for the three-month period, while revenues are expected to fall 19% to $31.04 billion.
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