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Honda has announced earnings for the quarter ending June 30, and the results were more than a little surprising. While analysts expected a loss of 106 yen ($1.1 billion US), Honda instead turned an operating profit of 25.2 billion Yen ($267 million US).

Honda's surprise profit comes in part because of the success of the hybrid Insight in Japan, where the suddenly strong Yen doesn't run into currency exchange issues. Honda is forecasting continuing currency issues, as the automaker sees the yen gaining still more ground verses the US dollar later in 2009. The hot-selling Fit and always strong Accord are also helping the bottom line, helping stabilize sales while companies like Toyota continue to see theirs sagging.

Automotive News is reporting that Honda's Q1 earnings were strong enough for the conservative automaker to raise its 2009 earnings forecast from 40 billion yen ($420 million US) to 70 billion yen ($737 million US). Honda has reportedly also raised its vehicle sales forecast by 85,000 units, to 3.295 million vehicles for 2009.

[Source: Automotive News, sub. req'd]

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