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Ford reported considering sale of Jaguar and other lagging units

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DETROIT (AP) _ Ford Motor Co. (NYSE:F), after losing $123 million in the second quarter, is starting a review of poorly performing units including Jaguar, with an eye toward possible sale of some operations, according to a published report.

Ford also is considering an alliance with other automakers, a move that General Motors Corp. (NYSE:GM) is considering, the Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday, citing unidentified people close to the situation.

``We have nothing to announce at this time,'' Ford spokesman Tom Hoyt said Wednesday morning.

Ford has been losing market share to Asian manufacturers for a decade and has been badly stung by high gasoline prices because big trucks and sport utility vehicles account for a majority of the vehicles it sells.

For the first time last month, it sold fewer vehicles than Toyota Motor Corp. in the United States.

According to the Journal report, the Dearborn, Mich.-based automaker is naming former investment banker Kenneth Leet to lead the review of its ailing operations.

The newspaper said the team will consider whether Ford should sell underperforming brands or seek alliances with other automakers.

It said the team also will look at the automaker's financing arm, Ford Credit, whose borrowing costs have risen because of Ford's credit downgrades below investment grade.

Ford, which acquired Jaguar in 1989, last month lowered the financial goal for its Premier Auto Group, which includes Jaguar, Volvo, Aston Martin and Land Rover.

Ford's U.S. sales totalled 224,447 vehicles in July, down 35 per cent from a year earlier. Toyota's July sales were 241,826 vehicles, up 12 per cent.

Ford's ``Way Forward'' restructuring plan, launched six months ago, calls for shedding 25,000 to 30,000 jobs and closing 14 plants by 2012.

By year's end, the company will have cut production capacity 15 per cent and will be one-third of the way toward its targeted employee cuts, chief executive Bill Ford has said.

The company's loss of $123 million in the April-June period contrasted with a profit of $946 million in the second quarter of last year. Revenue fell six per cent to $41.97 billion.

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Ford reported considering sale of Jaguar and other lagging units
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