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Volvo truckmaker posts 1Q loss on sales drop

STOCKHOLM (AP) -- AB Volvo says first quarter profitability took a beating on a drop in sales, with the Swedish truckmaker posting a 248 million kronor ($37 million) loss compared to a 4.1 billion profit in the same three months last year.

The Goteborg-based group says net sales for the quarter plummeted 25 percent year-on-year to 58.3 billion kronor. The group had established a quarterly sales record in the first quarter of 2012.

CEO Olof Persson said Thursday that the quarterly sales volume was due to a weak order book at the end of 2012 and was the lowest since the first three months of 2009.

Persson says sales were poised to improve as the order intake in the first quarter was up 30 percent compared to the last quarter of 2012.