General Motors Reports Biggest Loss Since 1992

    April 20, 2005

General Motors reported a loss of $1.1 billion, or $1.95 per share for consolidated net income for the first quarter of 2005.

The special items include charges for restructuring in Europe, U.S. salaried attrition programs, and facility impairments, partially offset by recognition of the recurring tax benefits above those reflected in the fifteen-percent rate used in GM’s adjusted earnings. These items had a net unfavorable effect of $265 million, or $0.47 per share in the first quarter of 2005. There were no special items in the first quarter of 2004.

“While most of our business units exceeded expectations, the results at GM North America (GMNA) were clearly disappointing,” said GM Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Rick Wagoner. “We have well thought-out plans to address GMNA’s poor performance, starting with aggressive product introductions this year, value-focused marketing initiatives, and further reductions in our cost structure, where the greatest need is to address the challenging health-care cost situation.”

According to a Reuters article,

President Bush said in a CNBC interview broadcast on Tuesday that GM is “going to have to learn to compete.”

“In other words, if the consumer starts saying ‘we want a different kind of automobile,’ they’re going to compete once again with, say, the Japanese automobile manufacturers to … keep their lion’s share of market demand,” Bush said.

This has been GM’s biggest loss since 1992 when the company lost $21 billion.

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