TOKYO, Jan. 31 (Xinhua) -- Honda Motor Co. reported Friday its net profit for the nine months through December gained 38.5 percent from a year earlier to 403.6 billion yen (4 billion U.S. dollars), owing to a weaker yen that helped boost overseas sales.
The automaker said that in the April-December period, its operating profit rose 3.1 percent from the previous year, on a 22. 6 percent increase in sales totaling 8.75 trillion yen (86 billion dollars).
The rolling out of new models and a favorable exchange rate between the yen and other major currencies helped Honda sell 3.13 million vehicles globally, a rise of almost 5 percent compared to a year earlier. The automaker also said that sales in its domestic and North American markets had been robust and cost-cutting initiatives had also helped buoy the company's results.
Honda also announced its quarterly net profit had doubled from a year earlier, totaling 160.7 billion yen (1.58 billion dollars) for the October-December third quarter, a rise of 77.4 billion yen compared to the previous year, with quarterly sales up 25 percent to 3.02 trillion yen (29.6 billion dollars).
Honda left unchanged its group net profit outlook at 580 billion yen (5.7 billion dollars) for the fiscal year through March 31, 2014, on a 23 percent increase in sales, at a prospective 12.1 trillion yen (118.6 billion dollars).
The automaker also said it shifted 1.08 million vehicles globally in the quarter, a rise of almost 10 percent compared to the same period a year earlier, with expectations to sell around 4. 4 million vehicles for the fiscal year through March, a hike of 9 percent from a year earlier, although marginally lower than previous forecasts, as sales are expected to contract in North American, European and Asian markets, the automaker said.