TOKYO — Japan's top automaker Toyota said Wednesday its profit for January-March fell 4% as vehicle sales lagged in North America, while smaller car manufacturer Honda reported a loss. Toyota recorded a quarterly profit of 459.5 billion yen, or $4.2 billion, down from 480.8 billion yen in the same period the previous year. Quarterly sales rose 2% to 7.75 trillion yen ($70 billion), the company said. The maker of the Camry sedan, Prius hybrid and Lexus luxury models is projecting a profit of 2.25 trillion yen, or $20 billion, for the fiscal year through March 2020, up nearly 20% from 1.88 trillion yen ($17 billion) for the fiscal year through March 2019. The company said results for the fiscal year through March this year were hurt by the absence of a U.S. tax break that boosted earnings in the previous fiscal year, and by investment losses. Still, the 30.2 trillion yen ($275 billion) in annual revenue Toyota reported was the first time a Japanese company has recorded sales above 30 trillion yen ($273 billion), a milestone for Japan, according to Japanese media reports. For the fiscal year that ended in March, Toyota sold 10.6 million vehicles around the world, up from 10.4 million vehicles in the previous fiscal year. Toyota's vehicle sales grew in Europe and Asia excluding Japan, but fell in North America, an important and lucrative market. Chief Executive Akio Toyoda told reporters Toyota must adapt to changes in the industry, such as self-driving vehicles, net-connectivity, ecological technology and car-sharing, to stay competitive. "My mission is to put Toyota through a full model change to become a mobility company," instead of just a car manufacturer, he said. Toyoda noted partnerships with Uber and other Silicon Valley businesses, as well as with SoftBank Group Corp., a Japanese internet company, will offer technology for various fields, not just vehicles. Toyota's production methods, admired around the world for efficiency and worker empowerment, are advantages, he said. But Toyoda, a grandson of the automaker's founder who has led the company since 2009, also recalled memories of hardship, such as a massive recall fiasco that had him questioned in U.S. Congress in 2010. "Every day has been nerve-wracking," he said. Also Wednesday, Honda Motor Co. reported a loss of 13 billion yen ($118 million) for January-March, despite growing sales, as an unfavorable exchange rate, income tax expenses and other costs hurt results. Chief Executive Takahiro Hachigo announced Honda will streamline its product offerings, consolidating model variations, and increase parts-sharing to cut costs. Nissan, reeling from the arrest of its former chairman, Carlos Ghosn, on financial misconduct charges, reports financial results on May 14.
LONDON — Japanese carmaker Honda is set to announce the closure of its Swindon car plant with the loss of 3,500 jobs, Sky News reported on Monday. Sky News said that the announcement by Honda could come on Tuesday, and that the plant was scheduled to close in 2022. Spokesmen for Honda were not immediately available to comment on the report. "That's speculation so we wouldn't comment on that," a spokeswoman for Britain's business ministry said. Honda built just over 160,000 vehicles at its British factory last year, where it makes the Civic Hatchback and Type R, accounting for just over 10 percent of Britain's total output of 1.52 million cars. It ceased building the CR-V crossover there last year. The firm said last month that it will shut its British operations for six days in April to help it counter any border disruption from the Britain's departure from the European Union. It has also said it was preparing to front-load some production at its plant to ship overseas or build up inventories. Factors other than Brexit are said to have contributed to Honda's decision, Sky News reported, but any such announcement would come just over two weeks after Nissan canceled plans to build its X-Trail sport utility vehicle in Britain. The BBC also reported that Honda was due to announce the plant's closure. It quoted a tweet from a conservative member of Parliament, Justin Tomlinson, who said, "Honda are clear this is based on global trends and not Brexit, as all European market production will consolidate in Japan in 2021."
Japanese carmakers Nissan, Toyota and Honda build roughly half of Britain's cars and, along with the rest of the sector, have been proponents of free and unfettered trade after Brexit, calling on politicians to provide clarity as soon as possible. U.S. carmaker Ford told British Prime Minister Theresa May last week that it may have to move some production out of Britain because of Brexit, according to a source on the call. Honda has struggled in Europe and built increasing proportions of its cars for sale outside of the continent in recent years. For example, the Civic Type R's engine is built in Ohio and shipped to Swindon.
The PV for THE YELLOW MONKEY's new song "I don't know" has been uploaded onto YouTube.
"I don't know" is a rock tune with the theme "memory," and it was used as the theme song for TV Asahi's drama 'Keiji Zero.' It will be included in their upcoming album "9999" due out on April 17. Directed by Artem Sky, the PV portrays "instability" and a "sense of loss" that he felt in the song.
Japanese experts have estimated for the first time the long-term economic damage caused by a possible mega-quake along the Nankai Trough, off the Pacific coast of central and western Japan, or in the Tokyo metropolitan area.
The Japan Society of Civil Engineers issued a report on Thursday saying a mega-quake would cut off transportation systems and damage production facilities, which could result in long-term declines in production and income.
Sony Corporation reported its fiscal Q2 FY2017 financial results earlier today. At the Group level, Sony is on the right track, reporting a revenue increase of 22% to 2,063 billion yen, with operating income of 204 billion yen – approximately 4.4 times higher than the same quarter last year. This led to Sony upping its overall forecasts for the full year, thanks to a good performance from its Semiconductors, Music, and Home Entertainment & Sound (HE&S) businesses.
Nintendo Co.'s Switch, a new hybrid game machine that works as both a console and a tablet, is selling well, helping the Kyoto-based company behind the Super Mario and Pokemon franchises trim its quarterly losses.
Nintendo said Thursday it has sold 2.74 million Switch machines and 5.46 million units of Switch software since sales began in March. It had expected to sell 2 million Switch machines by the end of March.
By Manabu Mimuro and Keita Kudo/Yomiuri Shimbun Sportswriters Samurai ace Tomoyuki Sugano began the World Baseball Classic elimination round for Japan and pitched well, holding the United States to three hits and one unmerited keep running more than six innings.
The warm up area, drove by Kodai Senga, held the U.S. squad to only one run — the aftereffect of a protective slipup. Seiji Kobayashi got a lift to his advancement as a customary catcher with significant involvement in the WBC.