VW profit rise in sinking German economy

Volkswagen has just released some bullish economic figures, against a dominant downward trend in Germany’s economy.

Net profit at Volkswagen AG rose 58 percent in Q3 thanks to a boost in accounting from its Porsche takeover. The complex merger of both brands led to a share options revaluation, and a change in how Porsche ownership is accounted for by Volkswagen.

Despite a fall in VW operating earnings outside of this merger, Volkswagen held to a full-year earnings forecast matching last year’s performance. Group net profit was shown as €11.38 billion ($14.8 billion) in Q3, up from €7.14 billion in the same period last year. Global sales rose 27 percent to €48.84 billion.

Quartz reports how the German business climate ‘continues to deteriorate’, according to the latest IFO survey of 7,000 executives. The report claims “confidence among these leaders of trade and industry dropped for the sixth time in a row, and has hit the lowest point in more than two and a half years”.

The drop in sentiment is worse than expected, but seems in tune with available data. Despite OK results for Skoda and Porsche, Volkswagen’s overall earnings curve is down, with a 1.6% drop in nine-month operating income.

The firm still insists it will sell more cars through 2012, and take the same amount of profit home. Good luck with that, as the Eurozone remains pretty sluggish. Autocar earlier reported how Ford will close its Genk factory, shedding 4,300 jobs. Estimates put Ford’s European plant outputs at a suicidal 52% of max capacity.

Small cars continue to be the big sellers in Europe. What would Ferry do? You could make a good guess.

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