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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Fiat's 3rd Quarter results: Some profit, more cash on hand and on target...

Luca Cordero di Montezemolo Chairman of Fiat



Fiat has released it's 3rd quarter results today. The results are solid and give a good indication that Fiat will meet it's target of a €1 ($1.5) trading profit and net debt below €5 ($7.4) billion by the end of year.

Also good news is that Fiat’s cash reserves increased from 6.4 billion euros($9.4 billion) to 8.4 billion euros ($12.4 billion) at the end of the second quarter.

Trading profit this quarter was €308 ($5.6) million. This is down considerably from last year's results (€802 million ($1.2 billion) for Q3 2008), however, last year was the most profitable in Fiat's 110 years!

These figures are in keeping with what analysts thought Fiat would do, and are largely from Fiat's European market share rise from 8% to 8.8% and its very strong Brazilian performance, where it has nearly one-quarter of the market.

Below are highlights of the Fiat 3rd quarter press release:

NOTWITHSTANDING EXTREMELY WEAK ECONOMIC CONDITIONS GLOBALLY, FIAT GROUP CLOSED THE QUARTER WITH A TRADING PROFIT OF €308($408) MILLION (2.6% TRADING MARGIN) WITH ALL BUSINESSES CONTRIBUTING POSITIVELY.
FIAT GROUP AUTOMOBILES CONTINUED TO OUTPERFORM. NET INDUSTRIAL DEBT REMAINED STABLE AT €5.8 ($8.5) BILLION DESPITE SEASONALITY, AND LIQUIDITY INCREASED TO €8.4 ($12.4) BILLION.

• Revenues of €12 ($17.6) billion were down 15.9% compared to the strong Q3 2008 level.
• Trading profit was €308 ($5.6) million (€802 million ($1.2 billion) for Q3 2008).
• Trading margin at 2.6% was the best quarterly result year-to-date in a typically lower performing quarter.
• Net result was positive at €25 ($36.8) million (€468 ($688) million for Q3 2008).
• Even though third quarters are typically cash absorbing, net industrial debt remained stable at €5.8 ($8.5) billion (€5.7 ($8.4) billion at the end of Q2).
• Liquidity was further strengthened at €8.4 ($12.4) billion (€6.4 ($9.4) billion at the end of Q2), on the back of 3 highly successful debt capital markets transactions.
• Group confirms full year trading profit in excess of €1 ($1.5) billion and net industrial debt below €5 ($7.4) billion.


2009 Outlook

We expect an improvement in the remainder of the year, as trading conditions stabilize
for most of our businesses. We confirm our view that the truck market and the
construction equipment business will continue to suffer depressed demand for the whole
year.

On the basis of year-to-date results and barring unforeseen systemic shifts in demand,
the Group reaffirms the following objectives for 2009 performance:

• Global demand for our products will decline ~20% compared to 2008.
• Group trading profit will be in excess of €1 ($1.5) billion.
• Group net industrial cash flow will be in excess of €1 ($1.5) billion, with net industrial
debt levels below the €5 ($7.4) billion mark.

The Group has undertaken a thorough review of the carrying value of some of its
investments in platforms and architectures, especially as they relate to the automobiles
business.

The strategic alignment of this business with Chrysler Group LLC will undoubtedly offer the opportunity for a significant realignment of the responsibilities for development of segment architectures between the two organizations.

As a result of this exercise, the Group may revisit the future viability of some of its past investments, necessitating the write-off, as unusual items, of these legacy investments.

These charges, if any, will be determined after the presentation by Chrysler Group LLC of its 5-year plan on November 4th, 2009. They will not have a cash impact.

While working on the achievement of our objectives, the Fiat Group will continue to
implement its strategy of targeted alliances, in order to optimize capital commitments and
reduce risks.
with thanks to Fiat Press

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