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GM profit up


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General Motors (GM) has reported a modest increase in quarterly profits, but badly missed analyst expectations on weak performance in its international operations.

The company’s boss said recent “hard decisions” would pay off.

“Launches of some of the best vehicles in our history combined with significant improvements in our core business led to a solid year,” said GM chief executive Mary Barra.

“The tough decisions made during the year will further strengthen our operations. We’re now in execution mode and our sole focus will be on delivering results on a global basis.”

The largest US car maker, which fully emerged from a period of partial US government ownership in late 2013, posted hefty gains in its North America division.

Operating earnings in North America, the company’s biggest division, rose nearly 65 per cent to $US1.9 billion ($A2.1 billion).

But GM’s operating earnings fell sharply in South America and in the international unit that includes China, India and the Middle East. The car giant’s European losses dwindled, but they still finished the quarter in the red.

Net earnings for the quarter were $US913 million on revenues of $US40.5 billion, compared with profits of $US892 million on revenues of $US39.3 billion. That equates to an increase of 2.4 per cent.

Earnings per share were 57 cents, including a net loss of 10 cents per share due to non-operating items. Analysts had forecast profits of 87 cents per share.

GM’s revenues also fell short of the $US40.96 billion forecast by analysts.

Net income for 2013 was $US3.8 billion, down 22.4 per cent from the 2012 earnings of $US4.9 billion. Revenues grew from $US152.3 billion in 2012 to $US155.4 billion in 2013.



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