Toyota profits jump to $12B


05/11/06 – The Detroit News

Record annual profits for Toyota. That seems to happen every year now. Profits = Cash = Investment = More Profits. It's a nice cycle to be in.

But the cash-rich Japanese rival is stepping up the pressure on its rivals on all fronts, with plans to increase research spending more than 10 percent this year to $8.4 billion. It will also boost its already-high capital spending.

“Because of their success, they can put down poker chips on a lot of different areas and technologies,” said Michael Robinet, vice president of CSM Worldwide, a Farmington Hills forecasting firm.

When I searched google for “toyota profits fiscal year,” it somehow turned up this New York Times article from 1987.

The headline:

Toyota Profits Fell 24.5% in '87

Still Toyota earned almost $2B that year. GM earned $3B. That's $3.56B and $5.34B in 2006 dollars. So, Toyota is doing about $8B better and GM is doing about $16B worse.

Another flashback tidbit from the 9/25/87 article:

“Toyota also said it had named more than 40 new United States suppliers for its Georgetown, Ky., plant, which will start production in mid-1988. They will bring the number of American suppliers to 100.”

It's an amazing contrast from 20 years ago, when NUMMI was the only North American Toyota presence.

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