Ford earns $2.7 billion in 2009, first profit in 4 years

DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) — Ford, the only U.S. automaker to avoid bankruptcy court, clawed its way to a $2.7 billion profit in 2009 and expects to stay in the black in 2010. It was the automaker's first annual profit in four years.

Ford's full-year revenue of $118.3 billion fell nearly 20 percent from 2008, but the Dearborn-based automaker benefited from cost-cutting, a $696 million profit in its credit arm and popular cars and trucks like the Ford Fusion midsize sedan and Ford Escape small SUV. It gained market share in North and South America and Europe, despite the worst U.S. sales climate in 30 years.

"While we still face significant business environment challenges ahead, 2009 was a pivotal year for Ford," Ford CEO Alan Mulally said in a statement.

Ford shares rose 32 cents, or nearly 3 percent, to $11.87 in premarket trading.

Ford's 2009 net income of 86 cents per share showed a significant improvement from the year before, when it lost a record $14.6 billion. Before severance payments and retiree health care charges, Ford made 43 cents per share.

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