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Navistar upbeat in its fiscal profit forecast

Navistar International Corp reported a first-quarter loss as anticipated, and while it forecasts a small second-quarter loss, the company reiterated it still expects to be marginally profitable for the full year.

The producer of International brand trucks and diesel engines said the loss from continuing operations for the fiscal quarter ended Jan 31, 2003, totaled $98 million, compared with a loss of $53 million in the first quarter a year ago. The net loss for the quarter, including discontinued operations, amounted to $99 million.

Consolidated sales and revenues from manufacturing and financial services operations for the first quarter totaled $1.6 billion, compared with $1.5 billion the first quarter of 2002.

John R Horne, Navistar chairman and chief executive officer, said a small second-quarter loss of 25 cents to 30 cents per diluted share is anticipated if negotiations with Ford Motor Co regarding the delay of its V-6 engine program are resolved favorably. He emphasized the company should return to profitability in the third and fourth quarters and be profitable for the full year as the result of improved industry demand, increased truck and engine shipments, realization of fixed cost reductions, and resolution of the Ford V-6 issues.

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