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Ford Loss Narrows on Cost Cuts, Improved European Sales

Ford Motor said Thursday its first-quarter loss narrowed as cost-cutting and improved results at its European and luxury vehicle operations partially offset weaker sales and charges for restructuring.

Ford, which is in the midst of a turnaround plan that includes closing 16 plants and cutting up to 45,000 jobs in North America, posted a net loss of $282 million, or 15 cents a share, compared with a loss of $1.4 billion, or 76 cents a share, a year earlier.

Ford's loss from continuing operations, excluding one-time items, was 9 cents a share. That was sharply narrower than the average Wall Street forecast of a loss of 60 cents a share as tracked by Reuters Estimates.

Revenue rose in the three-month period to $43 billion from $40.8 billion in the same period a year earlier.

"Our first quarter results came in somewhat stronger than expected, but there are many uncertainties going forward," said Alan Mulally, the company's president and CEO. "We remain focused on improving our quality, productivity and business performance."

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