Monday, May 27, 2024

GM reports record $9.7 billion earnings in 2015

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General Motors Co. on Wednesday said it earned a record $9.7 billion in 2015, including $6.3 billion in the fourth quarter

The Detroit automaker posted a record $10.8 billion pre-tax profit, with profit margins of 7.1 percent. The strong numbers were driven by good performances in China and North America, where GM earned a record $11 billion with record adjusted profit margins of 10.3 percent. It reached the milestone 10 percent margins a year ahead of schedule.

As a result, GM’s roughly 49,600 hourly UAW employees will make up to $11,000 in profit sharing, which will be paid out Feb. 26.

GM’s adjusted earnings per share last year was $5.02 a share, beating the consensus of $4.83. Its earnings per share in the fourth quarter was $1.39 a share, beating the consensus of $1.21 per share.

The automaker gained $1.5 billion from special items last year due to a $3.9 billion net gain from the reversal of certain valuation allowances on deferred tax assets. It lost $1.4 billion last year due to charges for litigation matters related to the ignition switch recall, and lost $600 million due to a Venezuelan bolivar currency devaluation.

“It was a strong year on many fronts, capped with record sales and earnings, and a substantial return of capital to our shareholders,” GM Chairman and CEO Mary Barra said in a statement. “We continue to strengthen our core business, which is laying the foundation for the company to lead in the transformation of personal mobility. We believe the opportunities this will create in connectivity, autonomous, car-sharing and electrification will set the stage for driving value for our owners for years to come.”

The automaker’s earnings were nearly entirely driven by North America, where a continued demand for SUVs and trucks fueled record sales.

In Europe, GM lost $800 million, better than the $1.4 billion it lost there a year ago.

Its international operations reported adjusted earnings of $1.4 billion, up from $1.2 billion a year ago.

GM’s troubled South America business unit lost $600 million in 2015, a greater loss than the $200 million from 2014. But the automaker was encouraged by break-even results there in the fourth quarter.

GM’s total net revenue for the year was $152.4 billion, down from $155.9 billion a year ago. GM said the numbers are a result of a negative net foreign currency exchange impact of $9.3 billion.

The automaker predicts its adjusted earnings per share in 2016 will fall between $5.25 and $5.75 in 2016.

Some analysts expect the momentum to continue.

“We remain bullish on GM,” David Kudla, CEO and chief investment strategist of Mainstay Capital Management in Grand Blanc, said in a statement. “We expect the company to take full advantage of continued robust demand, successful product launches and low energy costs this year.”

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles last week reported a profit of 377 million euros (about $410 million) for 2015, a substantial decrease from 632 million euros from the previous year due to recall and investment costs. Ford Motor Co. last week said it earned $7.4 billion in 2015, including $1.9 billion in the fourth quarter.

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