Toyota may be set to post another record profit, but what investors will really want to know is whether Japan's biggest car company will hike payouts to shareholders.
Stronger sales of larger models in North America, a weaker yen and cost cuts are set to push Toyota to a record profit for the second year in a row. For the fiscal year, the company has given an operating profit guidance of 2.7 trillion yen ($22.6 billion), up 14 percent on-year.
A surprise to the upside may on the cards, but only a modest one.
The operating profit may come in 40 billion yen higher than the company's guidance, thanks to foreign-exchange gains, particularly as the yen has depreciated against the U.S. dollar, according to Nomura analyst Masataka Kunugimoto's April 1 preview note. The yen weakened by around 16 percent against the greenback during the last fiscal year, between April 2014 and March 2015.
No lofty aspirations should be expected here, only solid and achievable targets.
The consensus median forecast is for a 9 percent rise in operating profit in fiscal 2016 to 3.18 trillion yen, according to a Reuters' poll. Revenue is expected to rise by five percent on-year to 28.5 trillion.
Not only would that mark another record profit for Toyota, but it will also be the largest profit ever for a Japanese company, Advanced Research Japan auto analyst Koji Endo told CNBC by email.