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Japanese car giant Honda cuts profit outlook as sales slip

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Honda has become the latest car maker to report weaker earnings as global demand softens.

The company said its profit in the July-September period fell 6.7% from a year earlier to 196.5 billion yen (€1.6bn) as vehicle and motorcycle sales slipped.

The Tokyo-based firm said an unfavourable exchange rate also hurt earnings.

Honda’s quarterly revenue declined 2.9% to 3.7 trillion yen (€30bn) as sales declined in the US, Japan, the rest of Asia and Europe.

Honda, which makes the Odyssey minivan and Asimo robot, said higher tax expenses also hurt results.

Honda lowered its full-year net profit forecast for the fiscal year through to March 2020 to 575 billion yen.

That is down from the 645 billion yen (£4.6 billion) estimate given in August, and below the 610 billion yen (£4.3 billion) earned in the previous fiscal year.

Honda said its financial services business did well, helping to offset some of the damage from other divisions.

Honda officials acknowledged that more needs to be done to reduce costs. They said a promised restructuring is under way.

Earlier this week, Honda’s Japanese rival Toyota reported its sales grew in key global regions, helping Japan’s top car maker post an increase in quarterly net profit despite a strong yen, which hurts the earnings of Japanese exporters.

Nissan, which has seen its brand power tarnished amid a financial misconduct scandal, will report earnings next week.

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