Ford Fueled Record Profits in 2015 With Truck Sales, China Surge

Aaron Cole
by Aaron Cole

Ford announced Thursday that it had earned a record pre-tax profit of $10.8 billion for 2015 — including $2 billion in the fourth quarter — bolstered by pickup sales in the U.S. and strong growth in China.

The record-setting year for the automaker wasn’t much of a surprise — second- and third-quarter results set records along the way — but Ford’s ability to finally turn a profit in Europe may be the most unexpected news. The automaker had lost money in Europe since 2011.

Latin America, notably Brazil, will continue to be a sore spot for Ford and other automakers. Ford said Thursday it expects to lose more money there in 2016 than the $832 million it lost there in 2015.

Ford’s profitability for 2015 finished at 10.2 percent in North America — way up from its 9.5 percent expectation set out by CEO Mark Shields in October. Overall, Ford achieved automotive operating margins of 6.8 percent.

“We promised a breakthrough year in 2015, and we delivered. In 2016, we will continue to build on our strengths and accelerate our pace of progress even further, while transforming Ford into both an auto and a mobility company and creating value for all of our stakeholders,” Shields said in a statement.

So far, investors haven’t rewarded Ford in the market. Shares of the automaker are trading at a 52-week low, and investors remain skittish that the car company can sustain an operating margin of over 10 percent without increasing production and slashing prices to meet volume guidance and sales targets.

For Ford, the good news was that China delivered beyond what many analysts expected. The region’s profits for the automaker soared 29 percent over last year and Ford expects the region to grow to help backfill any potential hiccups in its wheelhouse NAFTA region.

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4 of 20 comments
  • Acd Acd on Jan 28, 2016

    So how much did they make? This isn't a very informative article.

    • JohnTaurus JohnTaurus on Jan 28, 2016

      " Ford announced Thursday that it had earned a record pre-tax profit of $10.8 billion for 2015" Wow, that was hard to find!

  • Big Al from Oz Big Al from Oz on Jan 29, 2016

    Here is an interesting article on where Ford might be making lots of it's current profit. And, it ain't from the aluminium wonder trux. I thought this is The Truth About Cars??? If one looks at the graph in the link I've presented one will see that motor vehicle sales in China have doubled since the early part of 2015. Ford and GM have made massive increases in total numbers as well. Here's a cut and paste with the link; "Car sales give us a glimpse. They collapsed early last year and touched bottom at 1.27 million in July. Sales have been rising every month since, surging to a record 2.44 million in December. New registrations were up by 37 per cent for GM, and 36 per cent for Ford." Read more: Follow us: @smh on Twitter | sydneymorningherald on Facebook

    • Bball40dtw Bball40dtw on Jan 29, 2016

      Ford makes waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay more money in North America than China. Like, billions more. The profit isn't coming from China. Out of that $10.8 billion, $9.3 billion of it was made in North America. Trucks, SUVs, and crossovers in the US and Canada. That's what's making money.

  • ToolGuy 404 error on the product link. Which probably isn't terrific marketing on TTAC's part.
  • ToolGuy Second picture: Do you like pegboard storage? (I don't.)
  • ToolGuy "WHAT???"(old 'I was in the artillery' joke)
  • ToolGuy Oh and this.
  • ToolGuy "The boroughs of Bexley, Bromley, Hillingdon, and Harrow have likewise announced plans to take legal action to force a possible judicial review..."But: "In Hartford, Hereford, and Hampshire... Hurricanes hardly happen."