Nissan books $84 million Ghosn-related charges, cuts outlook

Carlos Ghosn is being held in Japan on charges he under-reported millions of dollars in pay as head of Nissan

This means that the Japanese brand is also resisting the appointment of new Renault chairman Jean-Dominique Senard as its own chairman, according to Bloomberg's unnamed source; this was the case under former leader Carlos Ghosn.

Nissan chief executive officer Hiroto Saikwawa has criticised Ghosn for holding too much authority and making decisions that were not in the best interests of Nissan, and the Japanese firm is seeking a review of the leadership structure, Bloomberg noted.

Prosecutors have charged the former chairman with failing to report this amount in eight years of Nissan financial reports. Stocks of both companies are down sharply since Ghosn's arrest.

Honda logged a net-profit fall of 34.5 percent for the nine months to December but revised up its full-year forecasts thanks to strong motorcycle sales.

"It's hard to find a manager like Ghosn who can take balanced actions", he said.

In a letter to Nissan dated January 19, the lawyers said they had "serious concerns about the methods used" by the company and its legal team, including the way they treated some Renault employees, according to France's Le Journal du Dimanche.

"We were only able to meet 60 percent to 70 percent of our (global) target for the year to the third quarter", Saikawa said.

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"So we want to raise our performance by improving the quality of sales", he added.

Nissan and its domestic rivals, including Toyota Motor Corp, have struggled with sluggish sales and falling profit in North America.

Factors for the slump included weak sales in North America and Europe, where unit sales were down 8.4 percent and 15.8 percent, respectively. Their margins have been squeezed as they resorted to steep discounts to drive up demand in a competitive US market where sales have plateaued near record highs.

The bleak outlook comes as Nissan also grapples with the Ghosn scandal and the resulting scrutiny of its corporate governance. The previous projection was for a 500 billion yen (4.5 billion) profit.

The one-time charge of 9.2 billion yen to reflect Ghosn's yet-to-be-paid remuneration shows Nissan and Renault are set to feel reverberations from the scandal for a long time.

Tuesday's earnings announcement is the first window for investors into the Yokohama, Japan-based automaker's challenges since the Ghosn arrest, while the entire industry faces complex issues such as the U.K.'s potentially jarring exit from the European Union and huge investments in electric and autonomous vehicles.

Ghosn has denied all charges against him.

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