General Motors reported its 2012 earnings this morning, with a total net income of $4.86 billion. Full year earnings were down slightly (five percent) from 2011 to $7.9 billion, before interest and tax deductions; however, overall revenue was up one percent to $152.3 billion.
Fourth quarter revenue for GM was way up after adjustments – 14 percent from 2011 to $1.2 billion, but its various international operations were all over the map. North American operations were down by seven percent to $1.4 billion, mostly because of higher operating costs and lower pricing, the latter of which cost the automaker some $300 million from its operating profit, according to Automotive News.
Europe continues to be a sore spot, thanks to its stagnated and saturated market. GM aims to break even on the continent by mid-decade, but lost $1.8 billion in the region last year (after adjustments) compared with a loss of $700 million in 2011. In the fourth quarter, GM Europe lost $700 million last year versus $600 million the year prior.
Conversely, China, Russia, and the other emerging markets lumped into GM's international division are continuing to do well. Operating profit for the unit was up 15 percent to just under $2.2 billion. However, General Motors' strongest region was South America – it saw a huge jump from a loss of $122 million in 2011 to a profit this past year of $271 million.
The American automaker also ended 2012 with a strong liquidity position: $37.2 billion in cash, versus $200 million from 2011.
“We recorded another solid year in 2012 as we grew the business, delivered a third straight year of profitability and took significant actions to put the company on a solid path for future growth,” said Dan Akerson, chairman and CEO. “This year our priorities will be executing flawless new vehicle launches, controlling costs and delivering more vehicles to our customers at outstanding value.”
Source: General Motors, Automotive News (Subscription required)