Goodyear Reports $333 Million 1Q Loss

Company posts loss for second consecutive quarter after auto sales drop

Goodyear Tire & Rubber reported April 29 a first-quarter loss and said 3,800 jobs had been cut under a restructuring program aimed at putting the tire maker back on the road to profits.

Goodyear said it had a first-quarter net loss of $333 million, or $1.38 per share, in line with analyst expectations.

It was the second-consecutive quarterly loss for the Akron, Ohio-based company, which had swung into a full-year net loss of $77 million in 2008 as U.S. auto sales plunged amid a recession and tight credit.

A year ago, Goodyear posted net income of $147 million, or 60 cents per share.

"Our markets presented us with the challenges we expected in the first quarter, and in some cases more," said Robert Keegan, chairman and chief executive.

"While we aren't satisfied with our results, they generally reflect the difficult market conditions," he said in a statement.

Sales plunged 28%, to $3.54 billion, largely due to weak tire demand and unfavorable currency exchange conditions, the company said.

The company had record sales of $4.9 billion in the 2008 first quarter.

The 3,800 jobs eliminated in the first three months were part of a restructuring plan announced in February that called for the elimination of 5,000 jobs and a salary freeze in 2009.

The manufacturer had slashed 4,000 jobs in the final six months of 2008.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2009

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