Toyota to announce record profits

<p>The carmaker is performing better than ever.</p>

Shares in car manufacturer Toyota are down today (February 4th), despite the company confirming it is expecting to announce a record profit in its next official financial results.

The firm revealed that it expects operating profit to reach 2.4 trillion Japanese yen (£14.5 billion) for the fourth quarter, but this news was not enough to force stocks higher today.

Instead, stocks were down by as much as 2.5 per cent on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange by 08:29 GMT on the back of the news.

Toyota announced that it was also able to post better-than-expected earnings for the third quarter, with its operating profit announced at 600 billion yen. The firm pointed out that this was nearly five times higher than earnings in the same quarter a year ago.

The car manufacturer said in a statement that its revised forecast is due to "progress in our recent profit improvement activities through cost reduction and marketing efforts, in addition to the change in our assumption of foreign exchange rates to reflect the depreciation of the yen".

Top sales

It announced that it sold 9.98 million vehicles during 2013, which was 270,000 more than its closest rival, US car giant General Motors. Toyota has therefore been the world's largest carmaker in terms of sales for each of the last two years. Some of the most popular cars Toyota makes includes the Aygo, the Yaris, the Rav4 and the Auris.

A weak yen is one of the main reasons why Toyota has been performing so strongly in the last couple of years, as Japanese exporters typically perform well when the currency is down compared to global rivals such as the US dollar.

With the yen down by as much as nine per cent against the greenback in 2014 alone, this year could be set to be an even better one for Toyota, which has a range of vehicles from small budget options to larger luxury models to ensure it can reach a wide selection of motorists.

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