Nissan Motor Co said on Thursday its net profit for the April-to-June quarter declined 15 per cent from a year earlier to 72.3 billion yen (923.7 million dollars) due in part to the yen’s strength.

Japan’s second-largest carmaker also reported a 19.7-per-cent decrease in operating profit to 120.7 billion yen for the period while sales rose 2.6 per cent to 2.14 trillion yen.

Japanese exporters like Nissan have been struggling with the yen’s rise against major currencies, which makes Japan-made products less competitive overseas and erodes repatriated revenues.

Nissan maintained its net profit outlook at 400 billion yen for the current financial year through March 2013.

Despite the decline in net profit for the quarter, Nissan’s global sales for the January-to-June period rose 16.7 per cent from a year earlier to 2.63 million, a record high for a first half as the carmaker recovered from the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami which struck north-eastern Japan, it said.

Nissan saw sales in China, the carmaker’s biggest market, climb 14 per cent to 678,007 units while those in the US, the carmaker’s second-largest market, grew 14.4 per cent to 577,721.

Nissan said its domestic sales surged 31.1 per cent to 366,569 thanks to government subsidies for the sales of ecologically-friendly vehicles.

Shares in Nissan closed up 1.14 per cent on Thursday ahead of the earnings report, which was released after the markets closed.

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