General Motors Posts $2.5 Billion in Second Quarter Earnings, up 89%

General Motors just posted its sixth consecutive quarterly profit since emerging from bankruptcy in July of 2009. The automaker’s second quarter earnings were up 89% compared to the second quarter of 2010 resulting in a net income of $2.5 billion on revenue of $39.4 billion. That equates to $1.54 in earnings per share of stock.

GM says it had net earnings before income tax in all major regions, including $3.0 billion in North America, $0.1 billion in Europe, $0.6 billion in International Operations and $0.1 billion in South America. Europe and International Operations EBIT were up while South American operations EBIT fell by $0.1 billion from the second quarter of ’10.

Automotive positive cash flow was $5.0 billion and GM’s automotive liquidity totals $39.7 billion. Following an initial public offering late last year, U.S. Treasury holds about a third of GM shares.

Earlier this week, Ford Motor Company reported earnings of $2.4 billion and Chrysler Group reported adjusted net income of $181 million, with a net loss of $370 million after paying interest on U.S. and Canadian government loans. Chrysler has since paid off these loans, though about $1 billion of Targeted Asset Relief Program funds paid to the old Chrysler remain unpaid.

The Detroit Three first quarter earnings are a bright spot in the stalling economic recovery, and GM’s earnings in particular reflect the company’s newfound ability to make money on small and midsize cars. The Chevrolet Cruze has emerged as GM’s bestselling sedan, while its aging fullsize pickup truck line relies on heavy incentives, though Chevrolet Silverado/GMC Sierra can still make a profit at such prices.