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Subaru releases earnings early after snafu, last FY operating profit halves

Subaru releases earnings early after snafu, last FY operating profit halves
FILE PHOTO - The logo of Subaru Corp. is pictured at the 45th Tokyo Motor Show in Tokyo, Japan October 25, 2017. REUTERS/Toru Hanai   -   Copyright  TORU HANAI(Reuters)
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TOKYO (Reuters) – Subaru Corp released its earnings results hours ahead of schedule on Friday, showing profit halved last year, after the Japanese automaker inadvertently uploaded its financials on its website earlier than planned.

Japan’s seventh-biggest automaker said it withdrew the material, but not before it was disseminated on social media. Shares in the company dropped more than 2 percent after the snafu.

It then officially released the figures, at 10:25 a.m. (0125 GMT) instead of the scheduled 1:00 p.m.

“We deeply apologise for the trouble this has caused,” Subaru said in an emailed statement.

The results showed operating profit fell 48.5 percent to 195.53 billion yen (1.37 billion pounds) in the year ended in March.

The maker of Legacy sedans and Forester sport-utility vehicle crossovers has suffered a string of setbacks of late, including costs related to production delays after the discovery of a defective steering component stopped output at its sole assembly plant in Japan for two weeks earlier this year.

It has also been facing mounting costs related to vehicle recalls in Japan after it admitted to cheating on domestic quality inspections, while slowing sales in the United States – its biggest market – have also stung its bottom line.

For the year through March 2020, Subaru expects operating profit to rise to 260 billion yen under international accounting standards it is adopting from this year.

(Reporting by Chang-Ran Kim, Chris Gallagher and Naomi Tajitsu; Editing by Christopher Cushing)

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