Daimler Profits Fall 11%

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Daimler AG (DDAIF) reported an 11% fall in earnings to €1,515 million ($1,833.0 million) or €1.34 ($1.62) per share in the second quarter of 2012 compared to €1,704 million or €1.51 per share in the prior-year quarter.

Profits were favorably affected by the higher unit sales at Mercedes-Benz Cars, Daimler Trucks and Mercedes-Benz Vans, offset by lower unit sales of Daimler Buses.

The company’s revenues for the quarter came in at $28.9 billion ($34.9 billion), up 10% from $26.3 billion in the year-ago quarter. Unit sales escalated 8% to 570,343 vehicles around the world.

Segment Details

Revenues from Mercedes-Benz Cars segment went up 5% to €15.4 billion ($18.6 billion) in the quarter. Unit sales augmented 4% to 370,384 cars. Revenues were positively affected by higher unit sales in United States and Asia along with a growth in compact-car segment and sports utility vehicles (SUVs).

However, the segment EBIT declined 16% to €1,314 million ($1,589.8 million) compared to €1,566 million in the second quarter of 2011. The decline in earnings was due to increase in expenditure for expansion of production facilities, launch of new technologies and vehicles along with a rise in raw material costs.

Revenues from Daimler Trucks increased 22% to €8.1 billion ($9.8 billion). Unit sales boosted 34% to 122,217 trucks. The higher revenues were attributable to better performance in the NAFTA region and Asia. EBIT went up 8% to €524 million ($633.9 million) from €486 in the second quarter of 2011.

Revenues from Mercedes-Benz Vans segment rose 8% to €2.4 billion ($2.9 billion). Unit sales went up to 69,324 vehicles from 67,989 vehicles a year ago. EBIT declined to €197 million ($238.4 million) from €206 million in the second quarter of 2011 owing to lower pricing.

Revenues from Daimler Buses fell 13% to €1.0 billion ($1.2 billion). Unit sales slashed 20% to 8,418 buses. The decline in sales was attributable to the weak demand for bus chassis in Latin America. The segment had a loss of €57 million ($68.96 million) compared to a profit of €61 million in the corresponding quarter of 2011.

Revenues from Daimler Financial Services grew 12% to €3.3 billion ($3.99 billion). EBIT was €338 million ($408.9 million) compared to €340 million a year ago.

For 2012, the company expects sales that will be more than 2.1 million vehicles recorded in 2011. Emerging markets and the North American market are expected to record above average growth in the year. However, the company expects 2012 EBIT to be flat compared with 2011.

Daimler is a leading auto and truck producer headquartered in Stuttgart, Germany. The company develops, manufactures, distributes and sells passenger cars, light trucks and commercial vehicles. It also provides financial and other services relating to its automotive business.

The major competitors of the company include PACCAR Inc. (PCAR) and Volvo (VOLVY). Currently, it retains a Zacks #4 Rank, which translates into a short-term (1 to 3 months) Sell rating.

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