Ford Motor Co. stocks tumbled after the company said inflation is pushing supplier costs $1 billion higher than expected in the current quarter, joining the chorus of major corporations warning about challenges rippling through the economy.
The automaker expects adjusted earnings before interest and taxes in the range of $1.4 billion to $1.7 billion when it reports results in October. The preliminary estimate is well below the $3.7 billion in adjusted EBIT Ford reported last quarter and the $3 billion it earned a year earlier. Shortages of key parts will also keep its inventory of half-completed vehicles elevated, according to a statement Sept. 19.
Ford’s shares fell 8.6% to $13.65 at 9:41 a.m. Sept. 20 in New York. The stock declined 28% this year through Sept. 19’s close.
The manufacturer is the latest household name to cite economic pressures weighing on operations. From FedEx Corp. to General Electric Co. to McDonald’s Corp., companies are pointing to flagging demand, stubborn supply-chain snags and the growing possibility of a recession.
Ford’s warning comes as the Federal Reserve is expected during the week of Sept. 19 to raise interest rates again in the fight against inflation, which has moderated little in recent months.
Ford now anticipates that the number of partially built vehicles — which it described as “largely high-margin trucks and SUVs” — will stand at around 40,000 to 45,000 as of the end of the third quarter, which ends Sept. 30. It expressed confidence that it could complete and sell those vehicles by the end of the year.
The carmaker said it still expects to earn $11.5 billion to $12.5 billion for the full year, unchanged from its previous forecast. Ford will “provide more dimension” about its financial expectations for 2022 along with its quarterly earnings report on Oct. 26.
Still, the inventory issue shows automakers continue to struggle with ongoing parts shortages. Ford’s latest comments echo those of rival General Motors Co., which said in July that was trying to cut down its inventory of partially completed vehicles, which had swelled amid short supplies of semiconductors.
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