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By Nick Carey and Paul Lienert
DETROIT, April 25 (Reuters) - Ford Motor Co on Thursday posted a better-than-expected first-quarter as pickup truck sales remained strong in its core U.S. market and the company expressed greater confidence in its forecast that 2019 would bring better results than last year.
Ford has launched a long restructuring of its business that will include cutting costs by $11 billion by 2021 and overhauling its product lineup.
Virtually all of the No. 2 U.S. automaker's profit was generated in the U.S. market, thanks to a strong performance by its best-selling F-Series pickup trucks and its new Ranger midsize pickup truck. The company lost money in most other markets, but less than it had expected.
Ford also made a small profit in Europe and the profit at its financing arm also grew.
"We still have lots and lots of work to do," Chief Financial Officer Bob Shanks told reporters at the company's headquarters. "It's the beginning of the game, it's not game over."
Ford posted a quarterly net profit of $1.15 billion or 29 cents per share, down 34 percent from $1.74 billion or 43 cents per share a year earlier. Excluding one-time items, Ford earned 44 cents per share, above analyst estimates of 27 cents, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.
Ford reported revenue of $40.3 billion for the quarter, down 4 percent from $42 billion a year earlier. (Reporting by Nick Carey Editing by Tom Brown)