TOKYO -- Nissan raised its earnings outlook for the year, helped by a weaker yen and favorable demand in the U:S., after reporting a surprise profit for its latest quarter.
Operating profit was 75.68 billion yen ($688.6 million) for April-June, compared with a 153.93-billion-yen loss in the same period a year earlier, Nissan said on Wednesday in a statement.
Analysts on average had expected a loss of 42.72 billion yen, according to Refinitive SmartEstimates.
Nissan now expects an operating profit of 150 billion yen ($1.4 billion) for the year ending March 2022. The automaker had forecast in May that it would break even.
Nissan's global sales have been boosted by recovering demand for cars in recent months and its newly released models are tracking well. But the company's ability to flip into the black this year will largely hinge on its ability to recover lost output in the second half.
The company warned that a global shortage of semiconductor chips will significantly hurt sales volume in the July-September quarter, but added that demand for its newly launched, pricier models will mitigate the impact on profits.
Nissan hopes to make up for production and sales losses during the latter half of the fiscal year ending March 2022 and expects semiconductor shortages to ease during that period, Chief Operating Officer Ashwani Gupta told reporters.
"Nobody has got a crystal ball. Nobody. But there are some assumptions," he said, referring to an expected easing of the crisis, partly because a fire-hit Renesas Electronics chip plant in Japan is functioning again.
Nissan had a good start to the year, Gupta said, attributing the surprise first-quarter profit partly to the company efficiently managing supply chains and strategically using its chip stockpile, minimizing the impact of the shortage.
Earlier this year, Nissan warned that is expecting to lose about 500,000 units of production this fiscal year due to the semiconductor shortage, largely in the first half.
Nissan maintained its global sales target of 4.4 million vehicles that it had set for the year in May
Bloomberg contributed to this report