General Motors reported quarterly profit that was higher than expected on Tuesday (April 30), and the company said its shares were helped by holdings in Lyft and Peugeot SA, according to a report by Reuters.
Besides that news, GM’s Q1 results generally lined up with industry predictions, as truck sales in the U.S. have been strong. The new earnings follow a 7 percent dip in U.S. new vehicle sales in Q1, and smaller company Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV’s trucks sold more than GM’s.
GM shares were down 2.7 percent on Tuesday morning trading.
“We remain concerned with the U.S. auto cycle, both from a pricing and volume perspective,” Buckingham Research Analyst Joseph Amaturo wrote to clients. “Moreover, specific to GM, we are concerned about recently monthly pickup truck and market share stats.”
In China, GM sales tumbled 20 percent and profit declined 37 percent. Auto sales were down country-wide, falling 2.8 percent last year. They were down again in Q1 reporting.
GM Chief Financial Officer Dhivya Suryadevara said China’s market continues to be volatile. “From an economic standpoint, there are green shoots,” she said. “But we have yet to see that translate to vehicle demand.”
GM plans to release 20 new car models in China, most of them in the second half of 2019. The company has a four-month supply of Chevy Silverado trucks as of the start of April, an amount that is considered high, especially for a declining auto market.
Suryadevara said the company plans to reduce inventory without the use of heavy discounts, and that tariffs and rising commodity prices will cost about $1 billion this year.
The company has also teased a self-driving ride-hailing service, saying it would be available by the end of the year. However, when asked about the project, GM higher-ups declined to release a date for the project and said that it was “gated by safety.”
GM instead said it was “bullish” about prospects for its pickup truck sales through 2019 and that new versions of its popular Silverado were scheduled to reach showrooms in Q3 and Q4.