General Motors Posts Strong Results Despite Its Losses

General Motors Co. Detroit’s only automaker that posted a 2017 net loss, down by $3.9 billion due to adjusting for the new corporate tax law and a one-off hit from its European money-losing business that it sold in 2017. However, that has not dampened the optimism from the leader of the automaker or its investors.

CFO Chuck Stevens said following the announcement of earnings that the company could not be happier about its results and disciplined execution that took place across all its business units during 2017.

The continuing operations at GM, the part of the automaker outside its European money-losing Opel-Vauxhall business, earned $300 million in 2017 on revenue of $145.6 billion, which was down 96% compared to 2016.

The biggest positive was the pre-tax profits of the automaker that reached $12.8 billion. That matched its record for 2016 that resulted in checks for profit sharing of as much as $11,750 for close to 50,000 hourly workers in the UAW for GM.

The automaker’s per share earnings reached a new record of $6.63. Last month General Motors said it expected its per share earnings would be $6.50.

CEO at GM Mary Barra said that the strong results reported demonstrated the earnings power in the core business at GM and extended its track record of meeting commitments. During her conversation on the phone with investors Barra added that GM starts 2018 as a more resilient, strong company due to decisive actions it has taken over the past couple of years.

Several changes were implemented by the company in 2017, including the strengthening of its lineup of products to meet increased consumer demand for SUVs and crossovers, and cutting its costs with action taken such as exiting from Europe.

Stock at GM closed on Tuesday up over 5.9% during a day that auto stocks in the U.S. outpaced the broader market. Fiat Chrysler was higher by 7.1%, while Ford ended the day 5.1% higher.

In comparison, the Dow Jones closed 2.3% higher on Tuesday a day after plunging by a record of 1,175 points.

The automaker’s operations during the 2017 fourth quarter ended with a loss of $4.9 billion on revenue of $37.7 billion. The loss is related to a $7.3 billion non-cash write down of tax assets during the fourth quarter.

GM posted an increase of 18.7% in its profits before taxes, earning over $3.1 billion during the final quarter of 2017.