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Ford Posts Best Quarterly Profit In Six Years

Maker’s $2.6 bil profit easily exceeds expectations.

by on Jul.23, 2010

Big profits and a smaller debt load for Ford.

Ford Motor Co. has delivered another big surprise, a $2.6 billion profit for the April-June quarter that’s not just the maker’s best quarterly profit in six years, but handily above analysts’ expectations.

Arguably even more significant is Ford’s promise that by year’s end it will have more cash on hand than debt, a striking turnaround for a company that risked mortgaging virtually all its assets to ensure that it had the money to survive what has been one of the worst automotive downturns in history.

Before making the usual one-time adjustments, Ford’s second-quarter earnings came in at just under $2.7 billion, or 68 cents per share.  Industry analysts had expected 41 cents.

“We delivered a very strong second quarter and first half of 2010 and are ahead of where we thought we would be despite the still-challenging business conditions,” Ford President and CEO Alan Mulally declared in a statement.

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Ford actually drew down its cash reserves by $3.4 billion during the quarter, leaving it $21.0 billion in the bank, but it was also able to reduce debt by $7 billion, to $27.3 billion.  The maker says it plans to have more cash than debt by the beginning of 2011.

For the first half of $2010, Ford has now earned $4.7 billion, up from $834 million during the same period last year.  The maker actually reported an operating loss, during the second quarter of 2009, of $638 million, or 21 cents a share.

TheDetroitBureau.com’s Joe Szczesny has a more complete report on Ford’s second-quarter surprise. Click Here for more.