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Hyundai Motor Cuts Forecast for Global Automobile Demand

Hyundai Motor Co., South Korea’s largest carmaker, cut its global industrywide automobile demand forecast for this year, citing a worse-than-expected economic situation in Europe and China.

The Seoul-based automaker expects 77.1 million units to be sold globally, down by about 500,000 units from what it forecast in April, Chief Financial Officer Lee Won Hee said today. Industrywide demand in Europe will fall to about 6.43 million vehicles in the second half, after about 7.65 million units were sold in the first six months this year, amid the worsening economic situation, Lee said.

Hyundai’s revised forecast comes at a time when industrywide deliveries in the region dropped 3.2 percent, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Sales in China may also be curbed by the registration limits imposed by major cities in the world’s largest automobile market.

“The economic situation in Europe will worsen in the second half of this year,” Hyundai’s Lee said in a conference call in Seoul today. “Still, Hyundai will be able to meet the global sales target we set earlier this year.”

Separately, Hyundai reported second-quarter profit that beat analysts’ estimates as net income climbed 10 percent to 2.55 trillion won ($2.2 billion) from 2.31 trillion won a year earlier, the company said in a statement today.

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