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GM crushes earnings estimates
Top automaker also sees strong U.S. sales for the industry this year.
CNBC Market Dispatches
4/20/2004

Investors are taking some comfort in continued earnings strength as more big-name companies beat consensus estimates. Stocks kicked off the day higher.

Corporate profits dominated the headlines with a spate of companies reporting, but the economy will vie for attention later today when Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan speaks on the banking industry before a Senate committee, starting at about 2:30 ET.

GM, the world?s top auto maker, cruised past expectations with a profit of $2.25 per share, 47 cents per share better than the Street was expecting. Profit fell from the year-earlier period when GM recorded a large one-time gain form the sale of its defense unit. Revenues edged up 3.1% to $47.78 billion, well ahead of the Street forecast for $38.97 billion.

GM also said it expects second-quarter profit to be higher than it earlier projected, pointing to a strengthening U.S. market. GM said it expects the entire auto industry's vehicles sales to total 17.3 million units in 2004.

Article: http://moneycentral.msn.com/content/CNBCTV...ches/P81390.asp

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Reuters
Stocks Rise, GM Earnings Boost Dow
Tuesday April 20, 10:49 am ET

NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. stocks rose on Tuesday morning as investors cheered strong quarterly earnings reports led by carmaker General Motors.

In earnings news, GM helped prop up blue chips as it reported better-than-expected first-quarter earnings on record results from its finance wing and improved results from its Asian automotive operations. It also raised its earnings outlook for the year. GM shares rose $1.85, or about 4 percent, to $48 on the New York Stock Exchange (News - Websites) . It was the biggest percentage gainer on the Dow.

Full Article: http://biz.yahoo.com/rb/040420/markets_stocks_8.html
 

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I thought they posted a $1.85 pershare today....wow!!!!

That's terrific.

GM is getting ready to kick some serious tail.

ZETA, SIGMA, KAPPA, LAMDA, ...here we come!!!
 

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Let us not miss the point as to why this is such an achievement; after all, GM's $1.3 billion profit pales in comparison to other non-automotive companies like ExxonMobil, GE, and Citigroup, which generate about 3-4 times the profit.

As elaborated by the Motley Fool:

In Q1 2003, GM earned $1.84 a share (excluding the $0.90 profit from the sale of GM Defense to General Dynamics). GM's Q1 2004 translated into a 22% increase in profits on revenue that edged up a mere 3%. Some of this resulted from solid performance at its nonautomotive unit, GMAC, which luckily benefitted from the Fed's decision to hold interest rates steady.

However, as GM's pundits are less apt to point out, global automotive earnings grew 12%. Much of this comes from the Asia-Pacific region (i.e., Toyota's, Honda's, Nissan's, and Hyundai's backyard!), where profits tripled and market share grew 10% to 4.7%. Much of that resulted from GM's strength in China and India. A weakening U.S. dollar should only exaggerate the gains.

If GM can avoid complacency and arrogance (you know, its usual M.O.), my guess is that they will continue to generate fat cash for their stockholders.
 

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Much of the profits were from GMAC. And sure it rocked Wall street, but it wasn't enough to fight off Alan Greenspan's power, making all markets fall off the cliff in the last hour of the trading day.
 
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