TOKYO: Toyota, the world's biggest auto manufacturer, has cut its group net profit forecast from ¥550 billion ($6.1bn; €4.3bn; £4.1bn) to ¥50 billion for the year ending March 2009. It is also on course to register a group operating loss for the first time in its history. 

As a consequence of the global slowdown in car sales and the increasing value of the yen, the company now expects to post a group operating loss of ¥150bn for the March year-end period.

These latest figures follow a downward revision in November, when the company slashed its operating profit forecast by ¥1 trillion to ¥600bn.

Fellow auto marque Honda also cut its annual profit forecast by 67% last week, as the travails of the auto industry spread to the Far East.

Data sourced from International Herald-Tribune; additional content by WARC staff