Aston Martin says profitability to improve

STORY: Aston Martin shares roared higher on Wednesday (March 1).

The luxury carmaker reported an operating loss of about $142 million for the year.

That was worse than a year before, but better than analyst forecasts.

Aston Martin blamed supply chain problems that delayed deliveries of its cars.

The British-based automaker - a favourite of spy James Bond - said it expects profitability to improve this year.

The company also believes it can turn free cash flow positive in the second half.

That as it starts deliveries of its next-generation sports cars in the third quarter.

The automaker forecast wholesale volumes of about 7,000 units for this year, slightly below market expectations.

But its outlook for a core profit margin of around 20% came in ahead of analyst forecasts.

Revenue at Aston Martin grew just over a quarter to $1.67 billion last year, largely due to higher prices.

The average selling price for one of its vehicles rose 18% to around $214,000.

Shares in the firm jumped as much as 14% in early trade, hitting their highest level since July last year.