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Cautious optimism from Toyota and BMW

Cautious optimism from Toyota and BMW
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Mixed news from the car industry – Toyota and BMW have just unveiled better than expected quarterly results, but both remain cautious about the future with sales hit by weak demand and the fact that potential buyers continue to find it difficult to get loans.

Toyota, which is the world’s biggest carmaker in terms of sales, beat its targets with an operating loss of almost 1.5 billion euros between April and June. However Toyota raised its sales targets for the whole of this year particularly in Japan where tax break should help it sell more Prius hybrids. Toyota’s Senior Managing Director Takahiko Ijichi explained: “Our upward revision of Japanese sales reflects the positive effects of government’s measures such as the “eco-car tax break” which are being felt throughout the market. Therefore, we expect to see an increase in domestic sales for the first time in five years.” Gemany’s BMW has been cutting costs to counter falling sales including laying off seven percent of its workforce this year. That helped it to pre-tax earnings of 169 million euros for the second quarter. BMW would not forecast earnings for the full year due to what it called “the highly volatile state of the markets” but did say it believed the downward trend in sales in the first half of the year will reverse.