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GM Tops Estimates on North America Gains but Asia Earnings Fall

Stocks in this article: GM

DETROIT ( TheStreet) -- General Motors (GM) boosted its North America earnings, narrowed its losses in Europe and beat Wall Street estimates, but Asia earnings fell.

Excluding items, the automaker said it earned 96 cents a share in the third quarter. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters had estimated 93 cents. Revenue rose 4% to $39 billion. Analysts had estimated $39.5 billion.

Including items, GM earned $698, or 45 cents a share. Improvement in operating performance was more than offset by a oss from special items of $900 million, or 51 cents a share, including $800 million related to the repurchase of 120 million shares of Preferred Series A stock. Also, GM had incremental tax expense equal to $500 million, or 29 cents a share. In the same quarter a year earlier, GM earned $1.5 billion, or 89 cents a share.

"We made gains in the third quarter as we improved our North American margins and increased our global share on the strength of our Chevrolet brand," said CEO Dan Akerson, in a prepared statement.

GM North American reported adjusted earnings before interest and taxes of $2.2 billion, compared with $1.7 in the same quarter a year earlier. GM Europe narrowed its EBIT adjusted loss to $200 million, down from $500 million. GM International, including Asia, reported EBIT adjusted of $300 million compared with $800 million a year earlier, reflecting recalls and tough competition from Toyota (TM).

GM South America reported EBIT adjusted of $300 million compared with $200 million a year earlier. GM Financial EBIT was $200 million, flat with a year earlier.

During the quarter automotive cash flow from operating activities was $3.3 billion and adjusted automotive free cash flow was $1.3 billion. GM ended the quarter with total automotive liquidity of $37.3 billion. Automotive cash and marketable securities totaled $26.8 billion, up from $24.2 billion for the second quarter of 2013.

"During the quarter strong demand for new vehicles like the Cadillac ATS, Chevrolet Onix and the all-new Chevrolet Silverado helped boost our top-line," said Chief Financial Officer Dan Ammann. "We also further strengthened our fortress balance sheet and reduced our cost of capital through our $4.5 billion refinancing of high cost obligations. '

-- Written by Ted Reed in Charlotte, N.C.

>To contact the writer of this article, click here: Ted Reed

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