January 28 2009.

Yamaha Motor Co. announced today that it expects its net profit to have been nearly wiped out in 2008 as it soaked up a slide in consumer spending in major markets brought on by the global economic downturn that's hit all of Japan's automotive companies.

The world's second-biggest motorcycle manufacturer said it now estimates net profit for the 12 months ended last December dived to only Y1.50 billion from Y71.2 billion a year earlier. Yamaha is scheduled to publish final earnings details on February 12.

The company, which is 15%-owned by musical instrument maker Yamaha Corp. had previously forecast a net profit of Y45 billion for the year.

Yamaha said that it now expects to pay a 2008 dividend of Y25.50 per share, down from the Y41.00 it previously forecast. The company also said it will cut directors' salaries by 10%-20% as part of its efforts to cope with the downturn.

Source: Nikkei Daily.