The Nihon Keizai Shimbun reports that Toyota Motor projects a 17% increase in consolidated operating profit to about ¥2.2 trillion (US$18.6 billion) for the fiscal year through March 2007 on brisk overseas sales of fuel-efficient cars as well as the weaker yen.
This would mark the first time that a Japanese company has posted a ¥2-trillion operating profit. Toyota also expects to set a company record for the seventh straight year.
Toyota forecasts a 9% sales increase to about ¥23 trillion (US$195 billion). While automobile demand is slumping in some parts of Asia, such as Indonesia and Taiwan, the sales volume in the US is expected to post double-digit gains on strong sales of its mainline Camry and other models.
Initially, Toyota had forecast an operating profit of 1.9 trillion yen this fiscal year. It had assumed a foreign exchange rate of 110 yen to the dollar for the year, but the actual rate has averaged around 115 yen.
The firm’s net profit is seen rising 6% to about 1.45 trillion yen, which would be its fifth consecutive annual record.