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October 27, 2021 10:45 AM, EDT

GM Beats Estimates, Sees 2021 Profit at ‘High End’ of Guidance

 2021 Chevrolet vehicles on a lot at the Green Chevrolet dealership in East Moline, Ill. 2021 Chevrolet vehicles on a lot at the Green Chevrolet dealership in East Moline, Ill. (Daniel Acker/Bloomberg News)

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General Motors Co. beat analysts’ consensus estimate for the latest quarter thanks to strong performance from its financial unit and a one-time gain, and said full-year results would come in at the “high end” of its previous guidance.

The automaker reported adjusted earnings per share of $1.52 for the third quarter, above the 97 cents in the analyst consensus forecast compiled by Bloomberg. That compares to $1.97 a share the previous quarter and $2.83 a share a year ago.

A global shortage of semiconductors that cut production was offset by a solid showing from GM Financial and a windfall of cash from battery partner LG Electronics Inc., which agreed to pay GM $1.9 billion for nearly all of the costs of recalling its Chevy Bolt electric vehicle.

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“Our third-quarter 2021 results clearly illustrate the strength of the underlying business that is funding our future, especially when you put them in the context of the calendar year,” Mary Barra, the company’s chief executive officer, said Oct. 27 in a letter to shareholders. “As a result, we now believe GM’s full-year results will approach the high end of our guidance.”

The Detroit automaker expects adjusted earnings before interest and taxes of $11.5 billion to $13.5 billion in all of 2021, or $5.70 to $6.70 a share.

GM’s stock had gained 38% this year as of the close on Oct. 26.

The upbeat earnings came despite a previously announced 33% drop in sales volume for the quarter, stemming from low production at factories and thin inventory at dealers.

GM’s all-important North American business made half the earnings before interest and taxes that the company brought in a year ago at $2.1 billion. China income was slightly better, rising to $270 million from $262 million.

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