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Detroit Makers Use Hearing to Bash Japan

But are exchange rates now simply level?

by on Jul.03, 2013

Ford CEO Alan Mulally labels has led an aggressive campaign criticizing Japan for currency manipulation.

Detroit automakers have stepped up their attacks on Japan’s inclusion in the Trans Pacific Partnership, intensifying claims that Japan has continued to manipulate its currency – which would create a lopsided playing field working to the advantage of Japanese competitors.

American Automotive Policy Council President Matt Blunt  noted in a hearing scheduled by the U.S. Trade Representative this week that imports account for only 6% of the vehicles sold in Japan each year, which is the lowest figure in the developed world. The U.S. is next with 45%, while in Germany, 56% of the vehicles sold are actually imports.

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“Today’s hearing was an important step towards making sure all involved in the TPP talks understand the need for Japan to commit itself to strong and enforceable disciplines on the use of currency manipulation and a level playing field for auto manufacturers, which have been the engine of the U.S. manufacturing recovery,” Blunt said.


Profits Slide – But Toyota Claims Recovery on Track

Make boosts full-year sales, earnings forecast.

by on Feb.07, 2012

Toyota hopes to boost demand for products like the Corolla during the fourth quarter.

Toyota profits slid another 13.5% for the latest quarter reflecting the maker’s ongoing production problems and the impact of lopsided exchange rates – but the Japanese giant also indicated that it has begun a long-awaited recovery that should see profits begun turning upward during the final three months of the Japanese fiscal year.

Toyota profits slipped to 80.9 billion, or $1.05 billion, for the October – December quarter, down from $93.6 billion yen the year before.  Sales for the quarter were up 4.1%, to 4.865 trillion yen, or $63.4 billion, hinting at the maker’s slow return to normal production levels after the hammering it took as a result of the March 11 Japanese earthquake and tsunami and subsequent flooding in Thailand.

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Toyota Managing Director Takashi Ijichi indicated, during a conference call, that sales continue returning back to normal during the current quarter.  Meanwhile, “company-wide profit improving efforts” will help trim about 60 billion yen in costs during the fourth quarter.  As a result, Toyota raised its profit forecast for the full year to 200 billion yen, or $2.6 billion, up from 180 billion yen, or $2.3 billion, in an earlier forecast.

“We feel confident the foundation of our business is now stronger,” he said.