GM profit beats as truck, SUVs sales rebound from pandemic lows

(Reuters) – General Motors Co (N:GM) on Thursday posted a stronger-than-expected quarterly profit, driven by renewed demand for trucks and SUVs in the United States and a rebound in China sales, sending its shares higher in premarket trading.

The company also said it would generate cash flow of $7 billion to $9 billion during the second half of the year.

In a statement, Chief Executive Mary Barra said the company was “well positioned to meet rising customer demand.”

GM’s U.S. sales in the third quarter fell 10% due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but results improved each month. In China, GM’s sales in the quarter rose 12%, its first quarterly sales growth in two years.

The Detroit automaker reported net income of $4 billion, or $2.78 a share for the reported quarter, compared with $2.35 billion, or $1.60 a share, a year earlier.

Excluding one-time items, GM earned $2.83 a share, above the $1.38 a share expected by analysts, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

The company’s EBIT-adjusted margin jumped 6.5 points to 14.9% in the quarter, reflecting the strength of its high-margin pickups and SUVs.

GM shares jumped 5.5% to $37.19 in premarket trading.

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