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Hyundai, Kia set to report poor Q1 results on virus impact

All News 10:17 April 12, 2020

SEOUL, April 12 (Yonhap) -- Hyundai Motor Co. and its affiliate Kia Motors Corp. are set to suffer a sharp decline in their first-quarter earnings due to a growing coronavirus impact on production and sales, data showed Sunday.

Hyundai Motor is expected to post an operating profit of 700 billion won (US$577 million) for the January-March period, down 15 percent from 824.9 billion won a year earlier, according to data from Yonhap Infomax, a financial service arm of Yonhap News Agency.

Before the outbreak of the new coronavirus, Hyundai had been forecast to post an operating profit of 1.2 trillion won in the first quarter helped by new models, such as the Palisade SUV in the United States.

Kia's operating profit is estimated to have plunged 44 percent to 333.5 billion won in the first quarter from 594.1 billion won a year ago. It was originally projected to post an operating profit of 500 billion won in the first quarter.

Hit by the spreading COVID-19, the two carmakers have suspended most of their overseas plants. They are still operating plants in South Korea and China, as well as Kia's plant in Slovakia.

Analysts said the companies will focus on boosting domestic sales until the COVID-19 outbreak slows down and sales in overseas markets recover. But they expected it will take some time for consumers to return to dealerships.

Looking ahead, Hyundai and Kia will report an operating profit of 735.5 billion won and 300 billion won, respectively, in the April-June quarter, sharply down from 1.238 trillion won and 533.5 billion won in the same period of last year, according to the data.

This photo, taken March 18, 2020, shows vehicles lined up at Hyundai Motor's port in Ulsan, 410 kilometers southeast of Seoul. (Yonhap)

kyongae.choi@yna.co.kr
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