Shares in Italian-American auto giant Fiat Chrysler Automobiles were down more than 8% today after the group announced losses of €319m in the first quarter.

Stock in the company, which will take on its new name once the merger between Fiat and Chrysler is completed, fell 8.32% 9.30am Irish time on the Milan stock exchange in the first hours of trading.

The market overall was down 0.9%.

The results announced yesterday were mainly due to costs associated with Fiat's takeover of Chrysler.

With the European market in poor shape and the US market booming, Chrysler's sales and profits have been crucial to the results of its Italian parent.

Fiat Chrysler's chief executive Sergio Marchionne yesterday laid out ambitious plans including a revitalisation of the Alfa Romeo sports-car line and the doubling of Jeep sales, mainly in China.

Fiat completed its buyout of Chrysler in January, although the union will not be finalised until mid-2014. 

After that, the Dutch-registered company will list its shares on the New York Stock Exchange.