By JEFF BENNETT
DETROIT — Ford Motor Co. said it has enough money to make it through this year after posting a smaller-than-expected first-quarter loss amid cost-cutting that helped the auto maker slow its cash burn.
Ford reported Friday a net loss of $1.4 billion, or 60 cents a share, compared with a profit of $70 million, or three cents a share, for the year-earlier quarter.
The auto maker’s loss, excluding one-time items, was $1.8 billion, or 75 cents a share. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters were expecting on average a per-share loss of of $1.23.
Revenue sank to $24.8 billion, led by a sharp falloff in U.S. sales. The year-earlier total was $43.3 billion, including $4.1 billion from sold-off nameplates Jaguar and Land Rover.
Ford shares rose 23% in premarket trading to $5.54.
“On balance, a solid set of results given the current climate,” J.P. Morgan analyst Himanshu Patel said in a research note Friday. He added that a recent rally in Ford’s shares is “not unjustified but [we] see only modest incremental upside potential in the equity at these levels.”
Ford Chief Financial Officer Lewis Booth said the first quarter was a positive for the company and the $21.3 billion in cash on hand will cover any financial needs through 2009.
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