Daimler posts record Q2 results, sees strong 2011 sales

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German automaker Daimler boasted record results in the second quarter of 2011, and forecast Wednesday that full-year sales would come to more than 100 billion euros ($145 million).

Daimler posted an annualised 30 percent jump in net profit to a record 1.7 billion euros, while core earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) reached a record 2.581 billion euros, from 2.104 billion in the same period a year ago.

Analysts polled by Dow Jones Newswires had anticipated a net profit of 1.58 billion euros and EBIT of 2.47 billion.

Daimler, which has seen sales in emerging and established markets mark solid gains, forecast that its full-year core earnings "will very significantly exceed the level of 2010," or 7.3 billion euros.

The company also now expects full-year sales to be "significantly more than 100 billion euros."

In the three months from April through June, group sales gained 4.8 percent to 26.3 billion euros, while the Mercedes-Benz division posted its strongest core earnings ever at 1.566 billion euros, up from 1.376 billion a year before.

"The very good earnings trend is primarily a reflection of increased vehicle shipments by nearly all divisions," Daimler chairman Dieter Zetsche was quoted as saying.

"Mercedes-Benz Cars actually recorded its strongest-ever volumes and highest-ever quarterly EBIT," he noted.

Strong demand for luxury cars allowed Daimler to deliver a total of almost 360,000 vehicles in the three-month period, a figure that included sales of the group's Smart city car.

"We are fully on schedule to turn 2011 into one of the most successful years in our long corporate history," Zetsche said.

A pick up in global activity also boosted demand for Daimler trucks, which posted a nine percent increase in unit sales to 91,500 vehicles, while the value of those sales was 14 percent higher at 6.6 billion euros.

© 2011 AFP

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