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Ford turns $3.7 billion profit in 2018

Ford headquarters in Dearborn, Mich. The automaker made $3.7 billion last year.

Ford pulled in a $3.7 billion profit in 2018, despite posting a $100 million loss in the fourth quarter, due largely to higher pension and benefit costs.

The Dearborn, Michigan-based automaker pulled in $41.8 billion in revenue in the fourth quarter, a one percent gain, and $160.3 billion for the year.

“We have consistently laid the foundation for the global redesign of our business, clearly investing to sharpen our competitiveness so we can better serve customers and invest for the future,” Ford President and CEO Jim Hackett said. “Ford enters 2019 with a clear vision, a solid plan, and we are now in execution mode.”

The automaker pulled Earnings Before Interest and Taxes of $7 billion, with an EBIT margin of 7.9 percent, due largely to its performance in North America. Ford's North American operations pulled in a four-quarter EBIT of $2 billion.

“While 2018 was a challenging year, we put in place key building blocks to build a more resilient and competitive business model that can thrive no matter the economic environment,” Ford Chief Financial Officer Bob Shanks said. “We are confident in our plan to transform our business.”

The automaker has $23.1 billion in cash and $34.2 billion in liquidity. Shanks said that's more than enough to fully fund the company's operations and capital plans this year, while maintaining cash and liquidity above target levels.

Locally, Ford employs more than 5,000 workers at the Chicago Assembly Plant in Hegewisch and the Chicago Stamping Plant in Chicago Heights, also supporting local supplier jobs like at the Lear seat-making factory in Hammond.

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Business Reporter

Joseph S. Pete is a Lisagor Award-winning business reporter who covers steel, industry, unions, the ports, retail, banking and more. The Indiana University grad has been with The Times since 2013 and blogs about craft beer, culture and the military.