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GM in Reverse; December Retail Sales: Best of Kass

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Doug Kass of Seabreeze Partners is known for his accurate stock market calls and keen insights into the economy, which he shares with RealMoney Pro readers in his daily trading diary.

Among the posts this past week were entries about General Motors and the December retail sales data.

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GM in Reverse
Originally published on Wednesday, Jan. 15 at 9:14 a.m. EDT.

Hold on there auto bulls.

Last night General Motors (GM) traded up 4% on the initiation of a $0.30-per-quarter dividend.

This morning the shares have reversed after downbeat guidance.

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GM's disappointing outlook follows the same pronouncement from Ford (F) recently.

Here are the highlights of GM's guidance this morning:

F14 company guidance:

  • Adjusted EBIT to be "modestly improved, with improved underlying operating performance more than offsetting increased restructuring expense"
  • EBIT-adjusted margins will be similar to 2013

Management commentary:

  • CEO Mary Barra: "We continue to perform well in the two most important markets in the world, the U.S. and China. We're taking advantage of our strength in these countries to restructure and make the investments necessary to grow profitably in other parts of the world."

Vehicle launch plans:

  • Following 18 vehicle launches in 2013 in the U.S., the company will introduce 15 new or upgraded models in that market this year. In China, GM and its joint venture partners will introduce 17 new or upgraded models in 2014. The company also announced plans to open four additional plants in China through 2015, enabling production of up to 5M units annually.
  • Outlook issued in conjunction with the auto industry conference in Detroit

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