Ford Credit earned $386 million in the third quarter of 2000, up $69 million, or 22 percent, from third quarter 1999, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Donald A. Winkler announced today. Earnings for the first nine months of 2000 total $1,126 million, up 18 percent from the first nine months of 1999.

Compared with the third quarter of 1999, the increase in earnings reflects primarily higher volume and an improved net financing margin, offset partially by higher credit losses and operating costs associated with the restructuring of North American operations. After-tax return on average equity for the quarter improved to 12.9 percent from 11.4 percent a year earlier.

"We are very pleased with our strong earnings in the third quarter. Based on our accomplishments during the first nine months of the year, we are confident that we will achieve our milestones for the year -- 10 percent earnings growth and improved return on equity," Winkler said. "Our record financing volume and market share are the result of hard work by our talented and dedicated employees."

Ford Credit's total net finance receivables increased to $157 billion at September 30, compared with $134 billion in same period of the previous year.

Ford Credit is a wholly owned subsidiary of Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) and is the world's largest automotive finance company. Now in its 41st year, Ford Credit provides vehicle financing in 40 countries to more than 10 million customers and 12,400 automotive dealers. More information about Ford Credit can be found on the World Wide Web at www.fordcredit.com .

Ford Motor Credit Company and Consolidated Subsidiaries
OPERATING HIGHLIGHTS
Third Quarter
2000 1999
Income (in Millions)
Income Before Income Taxes $ 634.3 $ 516.1
Net Income 385.5 316.9
Memo: Depreciation Expense $ 1,982.5 $ 1,864.8
Market Share
Ford Retail & Lease
United States 55.8% 52.6%
Europe 31.2 33.3
Ford Wholesale
United States 80.8% 83.8%
Europe 96.1 96.6
Contract Volume - New and Used Retail/Lease (in Thousands)
United States 952 860
Europe 206 211
Other International 179 130
Total Contract Volume 1,337 1,201
Assets (in Millions)
Net Finance Receivables $ 118,929.1 $ 100,088.4
Net Investment in
Operating Leases 38,442.4 33,891.0
Total Net Finance
Receivables $ 157,371.5 $ 133,979.4
Other Assets 12,522.8 13,897.8
Total Assets $ 169,894.3 $ 147,877.2

Liabilities and Stockholder's Equity (in Millions)
Liabilities
Debt - Payable within one year $ 59,820.0 $ 61,649.0
Debt - Payable after one year 82,075.6 62,666.8
Total Debt $ 141,895.6 $ 124,315.8
Other Liabilities 15,613.5 12,122.2
Total Liabilities $ 157,509.1 $ 136,438.0
Minority Interests in Net Assets
of Subsidiaries 401.1 408.3
Stockholder's Equity 11,984.1 11,030.9
Total Liabilities and
Stockholder's Equity $ 169,894.3 $ 147,877.2

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