General Motors 2012 profit s

Chicago, Feb 15 (IANS): General Motors Co. earned $4.86 billion in 2012, down from a record $7.59 billion in 2011, Detroit News quoted GM as saying.

The Detroit automaker earned $2.92 per share for the year, down from $4.58 a share in 2011, reported Xinhua.

GM's revenue rose by $1.3 billion in the fourth quarter to $39.3 billion and increased one percent in 2012 to $152.3 billion.

Big losses in Europe and lower vehicle prices in North America market are major reasons behind the automaker's profit slip in 2012.

GM lost $699 million before interest and taxes in Europe in the fourth quarter, compared to a loss of $562 million a year ago; and lost $1.8 billion in 2012 as a whole, compared to a loss of $747 million in 2011.

Analysts hold that 2012 as a whole was a good year for GM. Though the automaker lost certain market share at home, it still posted a 4-percent sales growth and has benefited greatly from the Chinese market expansion. GM is expected to enjoy continued sales growth in North America, China, India and Brazil in 2013.

GM is the last of Detroit's Big Three automakers to release financial results for 2012.

Ford Motor Co. announced in January it earned $5.67 billion for 2012, a decrease of about $300 million from 2011. In the fourth quarter of 2012, Dearborn-based Ford earned $1.6 billion.

Auburn Hills-based Chrysler Group LLC earned nearly $1.7 billion in 2012, up from $183 million in 2011. The automaker's fourth-quarter earnings stood at $378 million.

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