General Motors Co. (GM) - Get Report is seeing a trading - boost Tuesday morning following an earnings beat for the second quarter. Shares are more than 80 basis points on significant volume as of this writing.
Excluding one-time items, GM reported a $1.89 per share profit for the quarter, besting the $1.69 a share that Wall Street was looking for. The quarter was mixed with those one-time charges factored in, however. Second-quarter profits fell on a loss from the sale of GM's European unit, but that loss was no surprise; it was already anticipated by analysts.
The automotive industry has been under pressure in 2017, as Wall Street worries about the potential impact of slowing auto sales and rising interest rates on car companies. That's shown through in GM's share price in 2017, which has only managed to push 2.8% higher year-to-date, versus a 10% rally from the rest of the S&P 500.
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Reuters reported last week that GM may end up cutting six passenger cars from its lineup by 2020, a move to align its offerings better with what car shoppers are looking for.
And in the very short term, shares look like a buy on Tuesday's earnings reaction.
Here's the chart:
You don't need to be an expert technical trader to figure out the price pattern that's been shaping up in shares of General Motors this summer -- this setup is about as simple as they get.
GM has been bouncing its way higher in a well-defined uptrend since mid-May, catching a bid on every test of trend-line support on the way up. That uptrending channel is identified by a pair of parallel trend lines that have corralled GM's price action over that whole stretch.
Simply put, every test of the bottom of that price channel has provided investors with a low-risk, high-probability buying opportunity on the way up. And shares are touching that support level for a fifth time today.
Now, it makes sense to buy this bounce.
Actually waiting for the bounce is important for two key reasons: It's the spot where shares have the most room to move up before they hit resistance, and it's the spot where the risk is the least (because shares have the least room to move lower before the channel breaks, invalidating the upside trade). Remember, all trend lines do eventually break, but by actually waiting for the bounce to happen first, you're ensuring GM can still catch a bid before you put your money on shares.
From a risk-management standpoint, the 50-day moving average has just started paralleling GM's uptrend this summer -- that makes it a reasonable place to park a trailing stop.
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This article is commentary by an independent contributor. At the time of publication, the author held no positions in the stocks mentioned.