The stock fell as much as 7.9% to $18.32 in extended trading. It’s down 4.2% this year through Thursday’s close.
For 2022, Ford forecasts earnings of $11.5 billion to $12.5 billion before interest and taxes, up 15% to 25% over 2021. That compares with analysts’ estimates of $12.2 billion. Adjusted earnings before interest and taxes of $2 billion were less than the $2.77 billion analysts expected.
Sales rose 5% to $37.7 billion in the fourth quarter, with automotive revenue accounting for $35.3 billion of that total and surpassing the $34.6 billion analysts expected.
Some analysts had expected double-digit sales growth, Lawler said. The company is projecting $1.5 billion to $2 billion in higher commodity costs this year.
Investors have cheered Chief Executive Officer Jim Farley’s effort to accelerate Ford’s switch to electric vehicles, sending the shares up 136% last year and making the company the top automotive gainer. Ford’s market briefly topped $100 billion.
In recent weeks, that valuation has fallen back to around $80 billion.
“Financial performance is obviously critical,” Farley said in a statement. “We’re also proud that customers see how Ford is taking EVs mainstream.”
Bloomberg News reported on Feb. 1 that Ford is considering adding up to $20 billion to its EV spending over the next decade to convert factories to battery powered models. Farley has already tripled output of its electric Mustang Mach-E in Mexico and doubled production of the F-150 Lightning going on sale this spring.
Dearborn, Michigan-based Ford has seen car buyers pay up for its models as the pandemic and a shortage of semiconductors slashed inventory on dealer lots, causing discounts to dry up. Average sale prices for Ford models in the U.S. reached almost $51,000 in the fourth quarter, up from $46,211 a year earlier, according to automotive researcher Edmunds.com.
Crosstown rival GM earlier this week reported fourth-quarter earnings that beat analysts’ estimates but its forecast for the year was little changed from 2021.
In its home market of North America, Ford grew its adjusted profit before interest and taxes by 70% in the fourth quarter to $1.82 billion, mainly due to strong demand for vehicles like its Bronco SUV and Maverick pickup. But that undershot the $2.34 billion profit projected by analysts.
Ford’s loss in China, the world’s largest car market, more than doubled in the quarter to $150 million from $66 million the previous year.