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Magna Q1 sales up seven per cent


May 10, 2012
By The Canadian Press

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Magna International Inc. posted a first-quarter profit of $343 million and a seven per cent increase in first-quarter sales, boosted by a strong increase in light vehicle production in North America.

 The auto parts maker, which keeps its books in U.S. dollars, also increased its outlook for the year to include sales of $29 billion to $30.5 billion, up from earlier guidance for $28 billion to $29.5 billion.

Magna said the profit amounted to $1.46 per share, for the quarter, up from $322 million or $1.30 per share in the first quarter of 2011.

The average analyst estimate had been for a profit of $1.29 per share, according to Thomson Reuters.

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Sales in the quarter totalled US$7.7 billion for the period ending March 31, compared to $7.2 billion in the same period last year.

Shares in Magna were up $2.91 or nearly seven per cent at $45.59 in trading on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

“This higher sales level was a result of increases in our North American, European and rest of world production sales partially offset by decreases in our complete vehicle assembly sales and tooling, engineering and other sales,” the Aurora, Ont.-based company said in a release.

North American light vehicle production increased 17 per cent in the first quarter, year over year, as auto sales in the region continued to strengthen, Magna said.

Light vehicle production declined seven per cent in Western Europe.

Magna is Canada’s largest auto parts manufacturer and one of the largest in the world. It primarily supplies auto makers in North America and Europe.