In its third quarter results, despite recording lower revenues, Ford Credit, the American captive, saw earnings grow strongly.
Financing revenue in the third quarter totalled $3 billion (£1.8 billion), down from $4.1 billion the previous year. But, despite the 26 percent drop in revenue, the company’s income grew by an impressive $332 million year-on-year, to reach $427 million at the end of the third quarter.
The increase in pre-tax earnings primarily reflected lower depreciation expense for leased vehicles due to higher auction values, a lower provision for credit losses, and lower operating costs, said Ford Credit.
“We always adapt our operations to changing business conditions, and had the additional benefit in the third quarter of improved used vehicle auction markets,” said Mike Bannister, chairman and CEO of Ford Credit.
In Ford Credit’s European operations, the lessor financed 112,000 vehicles in the third quarter, down from 149,000 vehicles in the previous quarter.
While the lessor’s retail penetration rate dipped slightly, from 31 percent to 27 percent in Europe, its wholesale penetration rate gained one percentage point, from 98 percent to 99 percent of all wholesale business.
At the end of September, Ford Credit’s total on-balance sheet net receivables totalled $93 billion, compared with $116 billion at year-end 2008. Managed receivables were also down, from $118 billion on December 31 2008, to $94 billion at the end of Q3.
“The lower receivables primarily reflected lower industry volumes, lower dealer stocks, and the transition of Jaguar, Land Rover and Mazda financing to other finance providers,” the company said.