While the news was excellent for the full year, fourth quarter net income was only $472 million, or about the same as Q4 2010. While that makes eight straight quarters of positive numbers since the company emerged from bankruptcy in 2009, the earnings were weighed down by losses of $562 million in Europe from GM's Opel subsidiary.
There were also a number of one-time events that affected earnings in the fourth quarter, without which GM's profit would've nearly doubled to $900 million.
Still, the company counts 2011 as a successful year, and the stats tend to agree. TrueCar.com reports that GM increased its sales by over 13 percent, increased market share by half a point, grew average transaction prices by over $1,100 and lowered incentive spending by five percent. Based on that performance, all 47,500 hourly employees will receive profit sharing checks of up to $7,000. Check out The General's official press release after the jump.
Full-year EBIT-adjusted of $8.3 billion, up $1.3 billion from 2010
Fourth quarter net income of $0.5 billion and EBIT-adjusted of $1.1 billion
DETROIT – General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM) today announced 2011 calendar-year net income attributable to common stockholders of $7.6 billion, or $4.58 per fully diluted share, up from $4.7 billion, or $2.89 per fully diluted share, in 2010.
Revenue increased 11 percent to $150.3 billion, compared with $135.6 billion in 2010. Full-year earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) adjusted was $8.3 billion, compared with $7.0 billion in 2010.
"In our first full year as a public company, we grew the top and bottom lines, advanced our global market share and made strategic investments in our brands around the world," said Dan Akerson, chairman and CEO. "We will build on these results as we bring more new cars, crossovers and trucks to market, and make GM a far more efficient global team. This includes reducing our break-even level in Europe and South America and driving higher revenues around the world."
Fourth Quarter Results
Revenue in the fourth quarter of 2011 increased 3 percent to $38.0 billion, compared with the fourth quarter of 2010. GM's fourth quarter 2011 net income attributable to common stockholders was $0.5 billion, or $0.28 per fully diluted share, including a net loss from special items of $0.2 billion or $0.11 per fully diluted share.
In the fourth quarter of 2010, GM's net income attributable to common stockholders was $0.5 billion, or $0.31 per fully diluted share, including a net loss from special items of $0.4 billion or $0.21 per fully diluted share.
EBIT-adjusted was $1.1 billion in the fourth quarter of 2011, compared with $1.0 billion in the fourth quarter of 2010. Fourth quarter EBIT-adjusted for 2011 includes the impact of restructuring charges of $0.3 billion.
GM's fourth quarter 2011 special items include impairment charges related to goodwill and GM's investment in Ally Financial, and gains related to the Canadian Health Care Trust (HCT) settlement, the reversal of deferred tax asset valuation allowances in Australia and the extinguishment of debt.
GM North America (GMNA) reported EBIT-adjusted of $1.5 billion in the fourth quarter of 2011 compared with $0.8 billion in 2010. Full-year EBIT-adjusted was $7.2 billion in 2011 compared with $5.7 billion in 2010. Based on GMNA's 2011 financial performance, the company will pay profit sharing of up to $7,000 to approximately 47,500 eligible GM U.S. hourly employees. The full payout will be paid to employees who had 1,850 or more compensated hours in 2011.
GM Europe (GME) reported an EBIT-adjusted loss of $0.6 billion in the fourth quarter of 2011, including $0.2 billion of restructuring costs, matching last year's results. Full-year EBIT-adjusted was a loss of $0.7 billion in 2011, an improvement of $1.3 billion over 2010.
GM International Operations (GMIO) reported EBIT-adjusted of $0.4 billion in the fourth quarter of 2011 compared with $0.3 billion in 2010. Full-year EBIT-adjusted was $1.9 billion in 2011 compared with $2.3 billion in 2010.
GM South America (GMSA) reported an EBIT-adjusted loss of $0.2 billion in the fourth quarter of 2011, including $0.1 billion in restructuring costs, compared with EBIT-adjusted of $0.2 billion in 2010. Full-year EBIT-adjusted was a loss of $0.1 billion in 2011 compared with EBIT-adjusted of $0.8 billion in 2010.
Cash Flow and Liquidity
For the fourth quarter of 2011, automotive cash flow from operating activities was $1.2 billion and automotive free cash flow was $(0.9) billion, which includes the previously announced $0.8 billion contribution to the HCT.
GM ended the year with strong total automotive liquidity of $37.5 billion compared with $33.5 billion in 2010. Automotive cash and marketable securities was $31.6 billion compared with $27.6 billion at the end of 2010.
U.S. Pension Update
GM's U.S. defined benefit pension plans earned asset returns of 11.1 percent in 2011. They ended the year 88 percent funded, largely unchanged from 89 percent funded a year ago.
The company also announced today that it is taking further steps toward its goals of de-risking and fully funding its U.S. pension plans. Effective Sept. 30, 2012, GM will freeze its defined benefit pension plan for U.S. salaried employees, who instead will receive contributions to a defined contribution plan, or 401(k). This initiative will affect GM's U.S. salaried employees hired prior to Jan. 1, 2001. Salaried employees hired after that date are already covered by a defined contribution plan.
Looking forward, GM expects to increase its top-line revenue year-over-year in an expanding global automotive industry. In addition, GM expects continued pricing improvement with cost inflation well contained, while product mix and pension expense are expected to be unfavorable.
Capital spending in 2012 is expected to be in the range of $8 billion as the company continues to aggressively invest in new products and technologies.
"We are executing an aggressive product plan that will give customers around the world even more reasons to purchase a General Motors vehicle," said Dan Ammann, senior vice president and CFO. "Behind the scenes, we are working hard to eliminate complexity and cost throughout the organization to increase margins in all of our regions, and return Europe and South America to profitability. Overall, we have made good progress and we have more work to do."
General Motors Co. (NYSE:GM, TSX: GMM) and its partners produce vehicles in 30 countries, and the company has leadership positions in the world's largest and fastest-growing automotive markets. GM's brands include Chevrolet and Cadillac, as well as Baojun, Buick, GMC, Holden, Isuzu, Daewoo, Jiefang, Opel, Vauxhall and Wuling. More information on the company and its subsidiaries, including OnStar, a global leader in vehicle safety, security and information services, can be found at http://www.gm.com.