Ford published its fourth quarter earnings and reported a loss of $116 million.
But the news that caught everyone’s attention is that the company reported a 28% y-o-y drop in its operating income, excluding the pension charge and other one-time items, both for the quarter and for the year. After the drop, operating profit for the quarter stood at $1.5 billion and $7 billion for the year.
On a per share basis, Ford earned $0.30 in the fourth quarter and $1.30 for the full year, both down from the previous year.
Even though Ford sold more high-end vehicles in the fourth quarter than it did in the same quarter of 2017, expensive key commodities, rising costs associated with the on-going Takata airbag recall, and losses at Ford's Chinese joint ventures overruled the achievements.
Analysts believe that key reason for Ford’s fourth quarter loss is its whopping one-time charge of $1.179 billion that left it with hefty on-paper losses.
Segment-wise, in North America, Ford earned $2 billion in the fourth quarter, and for the full year, it earned $7.6 billion, down from $8.1 billion in 2017. In South America, Ford lost $199 million in the fourth quarter, and for the full year, Ford lost $678 million, an improvement of $75 million from 2017. In Europe, Ford lost $199 million in the fourth quarter, with a full year loss of $398 million. In the Middle East and Africa, Ford lost $49 million in the fourth quarter with full year losses up to $7 million. In Asia Pacific, Ford lost $381 million in the fourth quarter, with a $534 million loss in China.