Ford reports “good” news with its bad earnings release

Today Ford reported a 2007 full-year net loss of $2.7 billion, which translates to $1.35 per share. That’s the bad news. The good news is that this isn’t nearly as dreadful as 2006’s full-year net $6.72 per share loss of $12.6 billion.

The best news was that Ford didn’t evoke the economy as the source of all its problems. (Expect to see one or two automakers blame the economy, yet forget that the same economy allowed many rivals to pull significant profits.) Instead, CEO Mulally simply pointed to the decrease in losses as signs that the company’s rebound strategies are working. Key to these strategies is a push to accelerate new and better products to the market.

If there was one statistic in the earnings release that was humorous, it was that Ford’s Premier Automotive Group actually made a $504 million profit. You remember the much-maligned PAG, with Land Rover, Jaguar and Volvo. As it turns out, as Ford is in the final moments of Land Rover and Jaguar ownership, Land Rover actually pulled a profit. Volvo, the marque Ford wants to keep, accounted for an undisclosed loss.

Ford also predicted equal or better results for 2008. We certainly hope for better…no, for the sake of the company employees, make that “much, much, much better”


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