General Motors today reported net income of $1.5 billion in the second quarter, a decline of about $1 billion from a year earlier.
The 41 percent drop reflected accelerating losses in Europe, but the automaker's performance outpaced Wall Street expectations. GM posted earnings per share of 90 cents, beating analysts' projections of 76 cents.
In North America, GM posted a $1.965-billion profit, another solid performance that could quell questions about the company's U.S. market share slide. Even so, North American operating profit was down from a $2.249-billion profit in the second quarter of 2011.
In Europe, GM swung from a $102-million profit a year ago to a $361-million loss. The company replaced several key executives in Europe during the second quarter as the European economic crisis continued to grip the auto industry. GM Vice Chairman Stephen Girsky took over temporary leadership of the unit.
The loss in Europe was lower than some analysts had expected, which GM Chief Financial Officer Daniel Ammann attributed to the company's European temporary cost reductions. He said Europe would remain "very challenging."
"We're making changes in the business in terms of leadership where we need to in order to drive the results that we want," Ammann told reporters this morning.
The Detroit-based automaker recorded a $557-million profit in its International Operations unit, which includes Asia. In South America, the company lost $19 million.
GM's stock, which closed at $19.66 on Wednesday, jumped about 2% in premarket trading after this morning's earnings release.
"Our results in North America, our International Operations and at GM Financial were solid, but we clearly have more work to do to offset the headwinds we face, especially in regions like Europe and South America," GM Chairman and CEO Dan Akerson said in a statement. "Despite the challenging environment, GM has now achieved 10 consecutive quarters of profitability, which is a milestone the company has not achieved in more than a decade."
GM had net revenue of $37.6 billion in the second quarter, a 4.5 percent decline.
The automaker said its second-quarter performance in North America was somewhat stronger than expected in part because it delayed some spending until the third quarter.
In the U.S., GM's market share fell from 20% in the second quarter of 2011 to 18.2 percent. Its market share in Europe slipped from 9 percent to 8.8 percent.
But in China, GM's biggest market by number of units, the company's share rose from 13.4 percentto 13.8 percent.
The company has faced questions in the U.S. over whether it should fight to preserve market share, but Akerson has trained GM's focus on profitability.
"We've said this repeatedly," Ammann said. "Nothing's changed. Market share is an output of doing everything right in the business, having the right product in the right segments at the right price and meeting the needs and desires of the customer."
Most Popular Stories
- Facebook, Twitter Announce Apps for Google Glass
- Will Yahoo Splurge on $1-Billion acquisition of Tumblr?
- European Car Sales up First Time in 20 Months
- 'Star Trek Into Darkness': The Return of Khan?
- Google Fiber Making an Impact
- Entrepreneurs Chase Social Media
- Exciting Night for UFC Fans
- Teen Drivers Should Be Prepared for Any Car-Related Situation
- Summer Movies Aimed at Young Men, Teen Boys
- Financial Times Twitter, Email Hacked