It seems like even good numbers coming out of the month of September weren't enough to right the listing ship that is Ford. Because, wow, talk about a double financial whammy of bad news for FoMoCo — they announced this morning that the Dearborn-based automaker lost $5.8 billion (yes, that's with a "B") this past quarter — an amount equal to $3.08 a share. To put things in perspective, during the same quarter last year, the automaker posted a net loss of $284 million — or $0.15 a share. Ford's claiming that much of the loss comes from what they're claiming are one-time special charges related to the company's restructuring (stuff that's part of the "Way Forward" plan like $861 million for jobs bank benefits and employee separations). But in my mind, it seems like much of the loss is coming from a serious decline in sales — a drop of $4.7 billion. But hey, at the very least the automaker seems to be succeeding at losing money quite well, even if they don't appear to be selling as many vehicles as they'd hoped to. But wait, as we promised above, it gets worse. The Dearborn-based automaker's also...
...restating results from back in 2001 which will cause the company to have to restate financial results for the next five years (at some later date) — and folks are being warned it could seriously impact the company's earnings for even this year.
So where does this leave Big Bill Ford and Alan Mulally's FoMoCo? Well, this quarter will definitely put a hit on the company's cash reserves. Although the automaker's got $23.6 billion still in the bank, you know it'll burn through that money faster than a junkie through an 8-ball — and according to a number of financial analysts, the automaker'll be potentially almost $2 billion short of it's goal of keeping cash assets at $20 billion for the end of the year. Oy.
The problem is that the problem is no longer just a NorAm issue — it's a world-wide issue. The company is faltering across the board — and at this rate, with FoMoCo's losses now hitting $7.2 billion, the year-end numbers could even beat the General's $10.6 billion loss last year.
But hey, the hard work to become America's next Most MoFo'ed automaker doesn't seem to be bothereing FoMoCo CFO Don LeClair. The man in the hot seat still ended up sounding pretty upbeat nearing the end of the earnings call this AM — maybe he knows something we don't — like that he'll be taking a special kind of early out?
Breaking! Ford Announces September Sales Up 5% — Cars Up 26.2%, Trucks Down 5.4% [internal]