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EARNINGS ROUNDUP

Nissan Profit Climbs 8% as Worldwide Sales Rise

October 29, 2005|From Times Wire Services

Nissan Motor Co. said Friday that net income climbed 8% in its fiscal second quarter as strong sales around the world offset rising raw-material costs and discount incentives to sell vehicles in North America.

Tokyo-based Nissan reported net income of 125 billion yen ($1 billion) for the July-to-September period, up from 115.6 billion yen a year earlier. Sales jumped 11.5% to 2.3 trillion yen ($20 billion).

But Nissan's operating profit dropped 5.5% to 205.2 billion yen ($1.8 billion), reflecting the effect of the rising costs of incentives and materials. The automaker's net income was higher in part because a special charge for plant closures depressed results a year ago.

In the fiscal second quarter, Nissan sold 955,000 vehicles worldwide, up 15.6% from the previous year.

Nissan is studying whether to keep its North American headquarters in Gardena. In an interview Friday, Chief Executive Carlos Ghosn told Bloomberg News that the automaker would probably announce its decision before the end of the year.

The automaker has confirmed in the last month that it was conducting a review of operations that may include moving the North American business unit from California in an attempt to cut costs. Tennessee, home to Nissan's main North American assembly plant, is a top candidate, according to published reports.

"We aren't going to keep this open; there will be a time when we say yes or no," Ghosn said.

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