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Peugeot Sales Dive, Outlook Gloomy

Company Said To Be In A “Distressed” Condition.

PSA Peugeot Citroen unveiled its sales figures for the first quarter and reiterated its gloomy prognostications for the year.

Sales of assembled vehicles fell 23.5 per cent to 619,000, and kit cars shipped mainly to Iran fell 18.7 per cent to 713,000.

Peugeot said production in the first quarter was slashed 39 per cent.

Peugeot and Renault only announce sales in the first and third quarters, reporting profits and losses after six months and the full year.

Peugeot confirmed it expected a loss and negative cash flow in 2009, and said stocks of unsold vehicles were down 21.4 per cent compared with the same period last year, and down 17 per cent compared with the end of 2008.

Morgan Stanley analyst Adam Jonas said the company was still in what he called a “distressed position”, although that wasn’t a surprise.

“PSA has no (bottom line) guidance for 2009, but expects losses and cash burn to lead to €4 billion of capital needs for the full year. €3 billion (in soft loans) from the French government and €400 million from the European Investment Bank should help fill this hole substantially,” Jonas said.

“PSA expects European volume down 20 per cent still, despite early successes of the Scrappage plan,” he said.

Neil Winton – April 30, 2009

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