Hyundai and Kia are off to roaring starts in the United States this year, underscored by Kia's best sales month ever in May. But globally the situation for the South Korean siblings hasn't been nearly so positive.

Recently, they reported their fourth consecutive quarter of decreasing operating profits worldwide, and now they're "making efforts to cut costs," according to a statement in a joint email obtained by Bloomberg. However, the companies aren't detailing where they would make the cuts or how much they want to save. The amount could be significant, though. An unnamed Hyundai senior executive reportedly told a South Korean newspaper that the business might be aiming for up to 30 percent in reductions.

According to Bloomberg, Hyundai and Kia are facing falling total sales worldwide. Making the situation worse is that the strong Korean won versus the weaker Japanese yen gives competitors an advantage. The automakers also angered investors enough last year to prompt a stock buyback after paying $10 billion for the land for a future headquarters.

The prognosis doesn't look utterly dire, though, and new products are on the way. For example, the Hyundai Santa Fe is being refreshed in South Korea, and the next-gen Elantra debuts at this year's Los Angeles Auto Show. There's also the Creta on the way for foreign markets. Additionally, several models are still awaiting the green light, including a Hyundai Genesis-based luxury crossover, a compact CUV, and the Santa Cruz unibody pickup. Meanwhile, the Kia GT is reportedly close to production, too.

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