Volkswagen confident for 2019 despite car market crunch

Frankfurt am Main: German auto giant Volkswagen said it was confident it could defy a worldwide squeeze in car sales over the full year, although unit sales and operating profit fell in the second quarter.
Operating, or underlying profit before special items was down 8.1 per cent year-on-year in April-June, at 5.1 billion euros ($5.7 billion), VW said in a statement.
Revenues grew 6.6 per cent to 65.2 billion euros, although unit sales were down 2.8 per cent at 2.8 million vehicles — falling especially in the vital Chinese market.
And the group’s bottom line surged 24.2 per cent to 4.1 billion euros, due to a favourable year-on-year comparison with the second quarter of 2018 which was burdened with a one-off charge of 1.6 billion euros. VW “performed very well in a generally weaker overall market,” finance director Frank Witter said.
The sprawling 12-brand behemoth continues to expect “slightly higher” unit sales this year than in 2018 “despite market conditions that remain challenging”, and revenue growth of “up to five per cent” on the 236 billion euros attained in 2018. — AFP