As was alluded to yesterday by news publications and insider sources alike, Ford’s official Q1 results are marginally better than originally predicted. Excluding special items, Ford’s first quarter 2009 pre-tax operating loss was approximately $2 billion, a decline from a profit of $686 million a year ago. On an after-tax basis, Ford lost $1.8 billion in the first quarter, or $0.75 per share, compared with a profit of $477 million, or $0.20 per share, a year ago. Surprisingly, despite the still-sizable loss, Ford stock rallied at the news, climbing to over $5 a share for the first time in eight months.
Bolstering consumer confidence even further, outside economic advisers also confirmed what Ford has been claiming for months: the Big Oval is going to be OK. The remainder of 2010 will most likely continue to be plagued with significant losses, but their current rate of self-repair indicates that Ford will break even by 2011.
Nobly resisting the urge to say, “I told you so,” Ford CEO Alan Mullaly said simply in a release, “Our results in the first quarter reflected the extremely difficult business environment and weak demand for autos around the world. Despite the challenges, Ford made strong progress on our transformation plan by gaining share with strong new products, slowing operating-related cash outflows, reducing outstanding debt, lowering our structural costs and reaching new agreements with the UAW.”