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What investors should know before GM reports first-quarter results on Wednesday

Key Points
  • Despite an ongoing global semiconductor chip shortage that has caused factory closures, GM is expected to report a first-quarter profit.
  • Investors will be watching GM's earnings, but they’ll be more interested in any change to its guidance for 2021 due to the chip shortage.
  • Shares of GM are up by about 165% during the past 12 months. They’ve risen 32% in 2021.
General Motors Chairman and CEO Mary Barra on April 1, 2020 tours one of the company's facilities in Warren, Michigan that will produce Level 1 face masks.
GM

DETROIT – General Motors' first-quarter results are expected to be the latest proof points that its underlying business is solid.

Despite an ongoing global semiconductor chip shortage that has caused factory closures, GM is expected to report a first-quarter adjusted profit of $1.04 a share and $32.67 billion in automotive revenue, a 0.1% decline compared with a year earlier, according to average estimates of analysts compiled by Refinitiv.

Such results would eclipse those of GM's largest crosstown rival, Ford Motor. The automaker last week reported adjusted earnings per share of 89 cents versus an expected 21 cents.

Solid profits have become par for the course for GM in recent years. It's one of the reasons why Wall Street's attention will likely be more on other aspects of the automaker's business when it reports its earnings Wednesday.

Investors will be watching for any updates to its 2021 guidance, the semiconductor chip shortage and its electric and autonomous vehicles. Here are additional details on those topics and more.

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