German carmaker Daimler could be forced to announce
its second profit warning in the space of a few months after the
manufacturer of luxury Mercedes-Benz vehicles said on Wednesday it
planned to review its 2013 earnings outlook.
The group's announcement came against the backdrop of a weak start to the year in key auto markets, especially in Europe.
"Not much tailwind is anticipated from the markets in the coming months," Chief Executive Dieter Zetsche told the annual shareholders' meeting in Berlin. "For Europe in particular, there are no signs of a trend reversal."
Zetsche told the meeting that the company would now review its current business assumptions for 2013 to establish whether they are still valid.
However, investors had expected some less-than optimistic news about the company's outlook already on Wednesday. As a result, Daimler shares jumped 2.83 per cent to 42.02 euros (55.05 dollars) in early trading on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange.
Daimler's earnings before interest and taxation from ongoing business fell from 9 billion euros in 2011 to 8.1 billion euros in 2012.
"Many markets were weaker than expected at the beginning of 2013. That applies in particular to the markets for cars and commercial vehicles in Europe," Zetsche said.
The Stuttgart-based group planned to provide further information on its earnings outlook when it publishes its first quarter report on April 24.
In the meantime, data released in the last week showed BMW and Audi remaining ahead of Mercedes Benz in the race to be the world's top premium carmaker.
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