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Suzuki's 9-month net surges 20% to record on overseas sales

Suzuki Motor Corp., Japan's fourth- largest automaker, increased its nine-month profit 20% as demand rose for its compact cars in Europe and India.

Net income surged to ¥57.5 billion ($477 million), or ¥117.24 a share, for the nine months ended December 31, from ¥47.9 billion, or ¥88.04 a share, a year ago, Suzuki said in a release today. Sales rose 15% to ¥2.24 yen, from ¥1.95 trillion. Suzuki is expanding production in Japan, Hungary, India and Pakistan to meet rising demand for vehicles such as the Swift and SX4 compact cars. The company, based in Hamamatsu City, Japan, has forecast a fourth consecutive record profit for the current fiscal year. Suzuki in November forecast net income will rise 9.2% to ¥72 yen for the year ending March 31. The company reiterated the forecast today. Sales are expected to rise 9.2% to 3 trillion yen. Shares of Suzuki fell 0.6% to close at ¥3,450 on the Tokyo Stock Exchange. Earnings were released after the market closed. (Bloomberg)