Honda Motor booked fiscal first half revenue of JPY3.65trn (down 2.1% year on year) which, investor website said, beat analysts’ consensus by JPY290bn.

Operating income was JPY282.96bn and quarterly dividend will be JPY19/share, an increase of JPY8 compared to the previous forecast; total dividends paid for the fiscal year are planned to be JPY68/share.

In a statement, the automaker said, despite a decrease in demand due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, consolidated operating profit for the fiscal first half was JPY169.2bn yen, “back in the black”, due primarily to control of selling, general and administrative (SG&A) expenses resulting from a fundamental review of business activities in all areas.

Consolidated operating profit for fiscal Q2 rose 28.5% due mainly to control of SG&A expenses and cost reduction. This was despite a decrease in profit related to changes in sales revenue and model mix.

Noting “the future outlook remains uncertain due to the impact of COVID-19”, Honda revised upward its forecast for consolidated operating profit to JPY420bn “reflecting the business constitution built during the fiscal first half”.

First half sales revenue fell 25.2% to JPY5,775.1bn. Operating profit fell 64.2% to JPY169.2bn.

Q2 sales revenue was off 2.1% to JPY3,651.3bn but operating profit rose 28.5% to JPY282.9bn.

“Although sales are gradually recovering in many countries as restrictions on economic activities are being lifted, sales revenue experienced a year-on-year decrease due to a decrease in sales mainly in North America and Asia,” Honda said.