Nissan issues profit warning as US struggles hamper car maker

Nissan continued adjusting to business without ousted chairman Carlos Ghosn with a profit warning early this morning, as the car makers shares fell four per cent overnight on the Tokyo stock exchange.

Read more: Nissan and Mitsubishi executives step down in wake of Ghosn scandal

The Japanese manufacturer said it expected net profit for the year to drop 45 per cent to 319bn yen (£2.2bn), down on its previous forecast of 410bn yen. The previous 410bn yen figure was already on course to be the firms lowest profit in six years when it was announced in February.

Nissan blamed a sales slowdown in the US, its biggest market, for the falling profit, adding the firm had taken a hit in the aftermath of former chairman Ghosns arrest in Japan last year. The firm is in the midst of a management overhaul after Ghosn was kicked out of the firm for alleged financial wrongdoing while at the helm.

For several years Nissan has relied on heavy discounting in the US to meet aggressive sales targets set under Ghosns leadership, which it is now looking to reduce. In a bid to draw a line under his legacy, new chief executive Hiroto Saikawa has vowed to reign the practice in, and turn its focus to China as its next major target market.

Earlier this week, Ghosn was hit with a fourth charge by Japanese prosecutors who accused him of aggravated breach of trust. His lawyers immediately met the charge with a bail request which came on the day his latest period of detention was set to expire.

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