small_logo_nissan.jpgNissan is in the red for the first time in 7 years, taking a 54% plunge in group net profit for the 2006 financial year ending March 31 2007, and a net income drop of 11%. Global yearly vehicles sales for the year dropped 2.4% to 3.5 million cars, and US yearly sales dropped 4% to 1 million cars.

Nissan says the drop from 152.4 billion yen to 70.6 billion yen was due to job-reduction costs and higher taxes despite improved quarterly vehicle sales of USD$23.6 billion. Nissan recently cut 1,500 jobs in Japan, roughly 4.5% of it’s workforce – it’s first staff reduction in Japan in eight years as it aims to match lower production in a shrinking Japanese domestic market. It also trimmed it’s US workforce in 2 factories by 775 workers.

Ghosn says this is not something to be alarmed about. “It’s not a near-death experience like 1999. We haven’t gone in the ditch. But we’ve had an early wake-up call. And it is not our nature to hit the snooze button on the alarm and go back to sleep. So we respond with all the lucidity, the vigilance and the sense of urgency that drove our revival.”