GM to return to investment grade within the next year – CEO image

Dan Akerson, GM’s Chief Executive Officer, said he hopes the automaker regains an investment-grade credit rating within the next year, Bloomberg reports.

“There are things that will happen over the next year or so that will drive that decision”.
“I hope so, but I don’t know,” he replied when asked if GM will get an investment rating in 12 months.

GM’s accomplishments on Akerson’s watch include surpassing Toyota Motor Corp. as the world’s top-selling automaker and posting a record $9.19 billion profit last year. Still, the U.S giant needs to boost profits, develop more world-class vehicles and build on its “fortress” balance sheet, Akerson said.

Last week GM said its profit increased 30 percent in North America in the first quarter, but a loss in Europe and a one-time charge contributed to a 69 percent decline in total earnings.

Excluding some items, profit slipped to 93 cents a share, down from 95 cents a year earlier. That beat the 85-cent average estimate of 16 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

GM’s earnings beat investors’ expectations and underscored continuing strength in its core North American operations, where the auto maker bolstered both revenue and its operating margin.
GM’s finance arm made $181 million, compared to $130 million a year ago.

General Motors had a challenging April in the U.S., reporting an 8% decline in total sales due largely to three fewer selling days than the same month a year ago.

US carmakers are off to a strong start, with sales in the first quarter on track to pass 14m this year, the highest level since 2009.

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