Feb. 5 (UPI) — Ford reported a disappointing fourth quarter for 2019 on Tuesday, posting a net loss of $1.7 billion.
The American automaker released its 2019 fourth-quarter and full-year financial results on Tuesday, stating the loss, which equaled a drop of 42 cents a share, includes the previously disclosed $2.2 billion pension and other benefit losses.
“Financially, the company’s 2019 performance was short of our original expectations, mostly because our operation execution — which we usually do very well — wasn’t nearly good enough,” said Jim Hackett, Ford president and chief executive officer, in a statement. “We recognize, take accountability for and have made changes because of this.”
Due to the losses, the company had a net income of $84 million for all of 2019, a stark decline from the $3.7 billion earned in 2018 and the $7.75 billion in 2017.
However, Ford highlighted that the losses came amid a global redesign including new product introductions of electric commercial and passenger vehicles and investments in smart-vehicle capabilities.
Ford also said its quarterly operating loss in China continued to shrink for the fourth straight quarter, making the gap smaller by 61 percent compared to the same period last year.
The November reveal of the Mustang Mach-E battery-electric vehicle was one of its 2019 strategic highlights, it said, along with the agreements it made with international car manufacturers to speed up its autonomous and electric vehicle capabilities.
“We made great strategic progress this past year with a fundamental redesign of Ford that is setting us up to compete and win in this emerging era of Smart Vehicles for a Smart World — with great products, services and long-term value,” Hackett said.
Going forward, Ford expects 2020 earnings to be between 94 cents and $1.20 a share with capital expenditures of $6.8 billion to $7.3 billion.
However, it is still too early to estimate the possible implications the coronavirus outbreak may have on the business, it said.
Ford said it will report its first-quarter results for 2020 on April 28.