Despite a currency exchange hit and falling auto sales that dropped third quarter revenue 11.5% to JPY 2,240.7bn, Honda boosted fiscal third quarter operating income to JPY176.9bn after reducing costs across the board.

Net income soared 565.1% to JPY 134.6bn.

Nine-month revenue fell 23.4% to JPY6,299.6bn and operating income was down 42% to JPY267.6bn. Net income fell 38.1% to JPY 196.2bn.

Q3 automobile sales fell 2.8% to 914,000 as increases in Japan and Asia failed to offset falls in North America and Europe.

Nine-month sales were off 11.2% to 2,518,000 for much the same reason.

Honda is forecasting full fiscal year revenue off 14.8% to just over JPY10 trillion and operating income up 68.7% to JPY320bn.
Net income is expected up 93.4% to JPY265bn.

Automobile sales are seen off 3.3% to JPY3.517bn.

The net profit projection has been hiked up from 155bn and the sales revenue target to 8.53 trillion yen from 8.45 trillion.

"It's probably a bit too much to say the economy is on the recovery path, but I think it bottomed out," Honda vice president Koichi Kondo told a press conference in Tokyo.

He warned a drop in sales was expected due to the end of government incentives aimed at boosting sales of less-polluting cars.

"Globally, our biggest concern is some reaction from incentives in China and in South America... and also in Europe, including Britain where incentives just ended," he said.