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Mercedes gains help DaimlerChrysler’s profit

DaimlerChrysler AG said Thursday that its profit more than doubled in the second quarter as an improvement at its Mercedes unit and other businesses outweighed a slump at Chrysler.
/ Source: The Associated Press

DaimlerChrysler AG said Thursday that its profit more than doubled in the second quarter as an improvement at its Mercedes unit and other businesses outweighed a slump at Chrysler.

The automaker earned 1.81 billion euros ($2.28 billion) in the April-June period, compared to 737 million euros in the second quarter of 2005.

Sales were little changed at 38.6 billion euros ($48.6 billion) versus 38.4 billion euros in the year-earlier period.

“The earnings improvement was primarily due to the significant increase in operating profit achieved by the Mercedes Car Group,” DaimlerChrysler said in a statement.

Its truck business and financial services division also improved their results.

“In total, these increases more than offset the decrease in operating profit recorded by the Chrysler Group,” the automaker said.

Analysts had expected profit of about 835 million euros ($1.1 billion), according to Dow Jones Newswires.

However, the analysts polled hadn’t foreseen a one-time gain of 800 million euros ($1 billion). DaimlerChrysler said that was the result of a hedging operation related to its stake in European Aeronautic Defense and Space Co.

The company said second-quarter operating profit — a key gauge of underlying profitability — rose 11 percent to 1.86 billion euros ($2.34 billion) from 1.67 billion euros.