The good news is this: sales of General Motors vehicles were up in the U.S. last month (as we reported yesterday), and GM made nearly a billion dollars of profit in the first quarter of this year. But here's the not-so-good news: that's slightly lower than the $1 billion it made in the first quarter of 2012, and well below the $1.6 billion it made in the first quarter of 2011.
General Motors reported today that its worldwide profits hit $865 million last quarter (after adjustments), marking the 13th consecutive quarter of profit for the company. The profit leader, as you might expect, is the United States: GM North America reported $1.4 billion in profits, a direct result of strong sales. That's some 14 percent lower than the $1.6 billion it made in Q1 2012. In all GM says it has some $24.3 billion in cash and saleable securities on hand.
Looking around the globe, things look fairly okay: General Motors' international operations (which include markets not located in North or South America, nor Europe) division made about $500 million last quarter, about even with Q1 2012. GM South America broke even, down from a Q1 2012 profit of $200 million.
The red spot on the balance sheet, as you might expect, was General Motors Europe: flagging economies have pushed sales down for nearly every automaker, and GM's brands are no different: the Europe division lost $200 million last quarter. The good news: that's less than the $300 million it lost during the same time period last year. What's to blame for the European gains? Look no further than Opel, whose Adam premium minicar and Mokka subcompact crossover (sold here as a Buick Encore) have been popular with buyers.
Source: General Motors