General Motors beats earnings forecasts with light sales

  • Adjusted earnings exceeded Wall Street forecasts by 30 cents
  • Revenue reported at $34.9 billion
  • Shares dropped by 2.6%

The biggest automaker in the U.S. saw its shares fall this week after earnings beat industry forecasts but revenues fell short of predictions by more than a million dollars. The good news was that General Motors’ adjusted earnings for the first quarter exceeded Wall Street forecasts by 30 cents, hitting $1.41 a share. 

The Detroit-based automobile manufacturer’s report saw its earnings over the period reach $2.2 billion, which represents $1.41 per share on an adjusted basis. Earnings of $1.11 per share had been forecast by analysts, so the result was a good win for the company.

However, the total revenue figures came in at $34.9 billion against an expected figure of $35.56 billion, and core activity automotive revenue also missed targets, with a total of $31.26 billion being reported.

In the wake of the news, General Motors stock dropped by 2.6% to reach $38.97.

In the domestic market, strong sales for U.S. pickup trucks buoyed the traditional bottom line, with the company reporting that transaction prices for the new full-sized crew cab pickup trucks saw an increase of $5,800 over the previous models. The most popular GM pickups also saw a sales hike of 20% year on year.

Overseas auto sales saw nearly 814,000 GM vehicles being delivered in China in the first quarter on the back of the Monza and Chevrolet Onix models being successfully launched in the region. However, overall vehicle sales fell by 10% in total, with U.S. sales alone dropping 7% in the quarter.

In other areas of operations, General Motors saw the benefit of a revaluation of the stock it holds in Lyft, the ride-hailing Uber rival.