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GM Misses Sales Expectations, Blames Weather; Ends Year With Most Ever December "Channels Stuffed"

Tyler Durden's picture


Moments ago, GM, now fully non-government backstopped (and perhaps because of), reported adjusted US vehicle sales of 230,157, a decline of 6.3% from the 245,733 cars delivered a year earlier, on expectations of a 1.5% increase in sales. As Kurt McNeil, VP of US sales, announced "“December started a little slow but sales were stronger later in the month, especially in the week between Christmas and New Year’s. We didn’t make any big changes to our ‘go-to-market’ strategy during the month, which is to offer competitive incentives and market aggressively, and we are carrying good momentum heading into January." GM also was quick to put blame on wintry weather in December - fear not though, they won't be the last. It was unclear just how substantial GM's incentives were in a month in which below margin inventory liquidation was the name of the game for all retailers: we expect to learn soon.

Still, despite the weak December, GM did report a 7.3% increase in total 2013 sales, which rose from 2.6 million to 2.786 million sales, although judging by the weak end of year performance, many prospective buyers may have tapped out their government-funded car loans, which as we reported a month ago, represented together with student loans some 99% of all loan issuance in the past year!

The full breakdown of GM's December car sales can be seen below: of note - the surge in Corvette sales, which GM said had its best December sales since 2006. Perhaps less exciting was the 9.2% Y/Y drop in Volt sales. Are Americans losing their fascination with electric cars?

But perhaps the most interest datapoint in today's release, and one which may explain why GM's sales missed, was that the car's near record channel stuffing, which as we reported last month had soared in the past three months at a record pace, and was just shy of its all time high, saw a modest decline from 780K to 748K. Still, the latter number was still the highest ever December GM dealer inventory for the month of December in the restructured company's history. It would appears even dealers can't take any more, which also means to expect significant weaknesses in the various January manufacturing diffusion indexes and hard data points.

Source: GM


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Fri, 01/03/2014 - 11:41 | Link to Comment Temporalist
Temporalist's picture

This is the Milli Vanilli (lip synched) economy:

Blame It On The Rain

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 12:13 | Link to Comment Joe Davola
Joe Davola's picture

Oh it's forty below

and they can't sell them trucks

Obama don't give a fuck

He offloaded GM a long time ago


Fri, 01/03/2014 - 13:15 | Link to Comment knukles
knukles's picture

Al Gore'll fix it.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 13:17 | Link to Comment nope-1004
nope-1004's picture

Where is Max Fisher when you need him to troll that the above chart is not channel stuffing, but organic consumer demand?

I actually miss some of the trolls - makes life around here a hoot reading some of their Osama-ologies.


Fri, 01/03/2014 - 13:51 | Link to Comment Headbanger
Headbanger's picture

No shit!!   I just got an e-mail from Capital One saying they topped off my GM Gold Card credits to $4000 !

They added over $2000 to the points I had already!

And I just bought a really nice used 2004 Chevy truck.

But the price of a Chevy Tahoe starts at $41,000 !!!  WTF !?

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 14:19 | Link to Comment CognacAndMencken
CognacAndMencken's picture



I'm not sure who Max Fischer (Rushmore?) is, but the above chart clearly isn't channel stuffing.  As GM moves further away from bankruptcy and as GM sells more cars (sold ~200,000 more in 2013, than 2012), doesn't it make sense that GM dealers would take on more inventory?  If you notice in the above graph, GM dealers always increase their inventory in November because December is typically a strong month.  Just look at the chart... November inventory is always an outlier.  

And for the record, when GM reports sales like they did this morning, those are sales to end-users, the actual real customer.  They are NOT sales to dealers - even their press release states this.  In other words, GM is not "stuffing" dealer lots to fluff up todays sales reports.  

And lastly, I HATE GM.  I think they're the worst auto manufacturer on Earth (Pontiac Aztek? Cadillac anything?), so please don't accuse me of being some Obama shill.  


Fri, 01/03/2014 - 16:10 | Link to Comment nope-1004
nope-1004's picture

You aren't even a good troll, you Obama shill.  From GM's 2012 Annual Report, found on the bottom of page 76:


Note 3.

Revenue Recognition

Automotive sales and revenue are primarily composed of revenue generated from the sale of vehicles. Vehicle sales are recorded when title and all risks and rewards of ownership have passed to our customers. For the majority of our automotive sales, this occurs when a vehicle is released to the carrier responsible for transporting to a dealer and when collectability is reasonably assured. Vehicle sales are recorded when the vehicle is delivered to the dealer in most remaining cases.


Your post is so far from the truth, it's hilarious.  Or you're stupid.... lmao.  

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 16:36 | Link to Comment CognacAndMencken
CognacAndMencken's picture



You're a complete fucking idiot.  Seriously.  You really are.  You don't even know what you're referencing.  Do you know what "Revenue Recognition" is?  It has NOTHING to do with sales to end-buyers, which is what ALL manufacturers posted today.  "Revenue Recognition" is when GM counts a sale on their financial statements.  This has NOTHING to do with the sales figures posted today. Sales figures today are to end-users, the consumer. There are 2 sales: GM selling to the dealer, and the dealer selling to the end-user.  Today's numbers are END-USERS; all manufacturers posted sales to end-users today.   

Read their press release today. It clearly says, "GM's US Dealers Deliver 2.8 Million Vehicles in 2013."  It does NOT say, "GM Delivered 2.8 Million vehicles to US dealers."  Huge difference.... and you're too stupid to see it.  

Got it? Just because you have the ability to copy/past something, doesn't mean it has any relevance to the chart or numbers in question. 

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 19:32 | Link to Comment nope-1004
nope-1004's picture

lmfao..... A tantrum with a bit of squirming.  Always a good sign of someone in the know.

You are 100% wrong.  GM records a "sale" as defined by them, which I have provided above.  According to you the word "sale" has two meanings.  If so, find the second definition and a link to GM's defintion of it.  You won't.

A piece of advice for you:  A sale is revenue recognition.  You can't have revenue without sales.  GM records a sale when it leaves their plant.  GM does NOT record a sale when someone buys it from a dealer.

You are clearly wrong, and the GM definition of how they record a sale is there for all to see.

Also, why does someone who has only been here 3 weeks and 6 days, have such a passion about how GM is channel stuffing in desperation?  Why are you so disturbed by the fact that they are channel stuffing?




Fri, 01/03/2014 - 13:56 | Link to Comment Freddie
Freddie's picture

Who buys this Obama-UAW-GM-Chrysler-FIAT shit?  Retards.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 11:44 | Link to Comment More_sellers_th...
More_sellers_than_buyers's picture

How can I buy a car when I cant buy food? 

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 11:46 | Link to Comment yogibear
yogibear's picture

Obama soon to provide Obama cars. It will be a sure vote by the Free Stuff Army.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 12:17 | Link to Comment Handful of Dust
Handful of Dust's picture

Time for Barry to step in with another $16,000 tax credit/subsidy for every GM you buy + a Free Golf Cart.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 13:19 | Link to Comment zaphod
zaphod's picture

To be fair Bush handed out cash directly as stimulus checks.

I still remember seeing that and wondering what the hell happened to the republican party and why I should care about them.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 16:06 | Link to Comment StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

$300?? BFD!

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 11:50 | Link to Comment I am Jobe
I am Jobe's picture

Why does one need food, IPHONE sles up and so is GM and now Lockheed Martin is awarded several  contracts. sheesh, food is so yesterday, social media will fuel Amerika


Fri, 01/03/2014 - 12:05 | Link to Comment kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

You can't finance food.

Why not get a spiffy condo too?

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 12:38 | Link to Comment Dr. Richard Head
Dr. Richard Head's picture

You didn't channel stuff that.

If you like your channel, you can stuff it.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 13:23 | Link to Comment post turtle saver
post turtle saver's picture

the better question is "how can I buy a car when my health care cost per month is now as much as my mortgage payment?"... you can replace "car" with just about any big ticket item for 2014... Obama and the Dems have done it, they've managed to suck consumer demand right out of the economy in one stroke of a pen... stupid fucks

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 13:33 | Link to Comment FeralSerf
FeralSerf's picture

It's rumoured that Monsanto has The Answer. Blood can be squeezed out of their new taxpayer subsidized GMO turnips.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 11:45 | Link to Comment yogibear
yogibear's picture

Include GMs and Chryslers soon with Obama phones, food stamps and free rent.

Ride that fine Obama car to use your food stamps while talking on your Obama phone.


Fri, 01/03/2014 - 14:05 | Link to Comment Freddie
Freddie's picture

Dude - look around. This is already happening.  The rent, food and phones are already free.  They get financed in shit like Chryslers because no one would buy them because they depreciate so fast.   They probably roll the repo for 6 to 9 months.  Car goes back to the bank - free shit army member goes and picks out a new one.  This ***IS*** happening. 

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 11:45 | Link to Comment mightybillfuji
mightybillfuji's picture

Does anyone know what a baseline of inventory in "normal times" should be, insofar of how out of whack things are here? 

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 11:49 | Link to Comment I am Jobe
I am Jobe's picture

GM should have offered

Blow up dolls

Tickets to hookers

Blow jobs

Gay Parade 

Fuck Dynasty

Above all, a evening at the Whore House , to get bent over 

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 12:38 | Link to Comment Last of the Mid...
Last of the Middle Class's picture

$16,000 off sticker plus the above and finally an investment banker hanging from the lamp post nearest the street and I'll come take a peek at what you got GM. No guarantees tho!!!

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 13:38 | Link to Comment PrecipiceWatching
PrecipiceWatching's picture

Why the animosity toward Duck Dynasty?

They're the good guys as opposed to the cowardly fascists who run the Anal Entry Network.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 16:06 | Link to Comment StychoKiller
Fri, 01/03/2014 - 11:50 | Link to Comment max2205
max2205's picture

Still not budging on 500 below dealer invoice...which is a joke

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 12:34 | Link to Comment Uncle Remus
Uncle Remus's picture

Which dealer invoice?

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 11:50 | Link to Comment starman
starman's picture

How's this GM's total Domestic sales in 2007 ; 4.3 million units
2013 total domestic sales ; 2.2 million units , and 2200 less dealerships since 2008.

Call that a recovery !

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 11:48 | Link to Comment I am Jobe
I am Jobe's picture

Call it a short term memory

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 12:21 | Link to Comment Everybodys All ...
Everybodys All American's picture

Call it brainwashing.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 11:52 | Link to Comment kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

Hell's the problem?  Sitting for months in the cold and freezing rain is always great for new equipment which hasn't been properly broken in.

When American Motors finally went belly up, (around 1988?), the local dealer in Northern VA had three years of inventory on hand.

Channel stuffing is magic beans;)


Fri, 01/03/2014 - 11:57 | Link to Comment 666
666's picture

Corvette sales are higher than Volts. I wonder why?

Must remember to turn sarcasm off before I go to work.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 14:29 | Link to Comment knukles
knukles's picture

And both from the very same company.
To consumers who don't get subsidies to buy 'Vettes.


Fri, 01/03/2014 - 11:51 | Link to Comment Fix It Again Timmy
Fix It Again Timmy's picture

Is this not a great way to run a company?  Since when did "We'll keep making shit, people will EVENTUALLY buy our stuff" become a valid business model?

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 12:06 | Link to Comment replaceme
replaceme's picture

It's a great model - they make that shit with found, taxpayer money.  If they go under, they offer up voters to politicians, start over.  Makes great commercials.  I want to drink.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 17:31 | Link to Comment Emergency Ward
Emergency Ward's picture

Who had a blow-out year at GM?  The union workers with piles of overtime (urged on by the union bosses who got an Obama-crony-stakeholder seat on the board) and the Obama-crony execs with their bonuses for meeting PRODUCTION targets.  FedGuv held up the stock price besides (even selling its own shares at a loss).

The SALES side will be handled by FedGuv-insured "CAR-rie Mae Yellen", which will push zero-interest, zero-down, "no income, no problem" 144-month car loans to pay for those Escalades and Avalanches.

Modern crony-car-pitalism at work  Stimulus.  Win-Win.  Shiny new cars for the multitudes.  No more worries about profit and loss.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 11:55 | Link to Comment ziggy59
ziggy59's picture

Chrysler also blamed bad DEC numbers on ice and

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 11:53 | Link to Comment Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

Good Lord, if the blame the lousy sales on a couple inches of snow I can't wait to see how the fudge their numbers now that some real cold weather has rolled in. A little anecdotal information here. My wife is the office manager for the largest real estate office in town, and according to her they had  record December in both closings and dollar amount transactions.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 12:19 | Link to Comment trillion_dollar...
trillion_dollar_deficit's picture

Interesting. I wonder if the impending new Obamacare tax on higher end homes drove some of this.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 12:03 | Link to Comment astoriajoe
astoriajoe's picture

Are the volt's tough to start when its f*cking freezing outside? Tough to take the car off the lot if it won't start.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 13:35 | Link to Comment Citxmech
Citxmech's picture

It might go far enough to get off the lot - but once you turn the heater on - your range will probably be measured in feet.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 12:04 | Link to Comment yogibear
yogibear's picture

King Obama can design a new model called the Obama Car. GM can get paid by the government to make it and issue it to the Free Stuff Army so they vote in the next election.

Hire this lady as the Obama Car spokesperson.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 12:04 | Link to Comment Musashi Miyamoto
Musashi Miyamoto's picture

The problem with bailing out the auto industry is that every-ones already gone. Obama's voting base in Detroit will continue to dwindle regardless of anything he does. I have no idea why his approval rating isn't as low as Hollande's, it goes to show how hopeless the sheep here are. At least acknowledge what a weak man he is.

Let me be clear (pause for dramatic effect) , you didn't borrow that.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 12:11 | Link to Comment monopoly
monopoly's picture

Bad WX. Ridiculous

And on the idiot box where they pay boring Matt Lauer $24 million a year to read a teleprompter they blame the lack of football ticket sales in Green Bay on "flat screens". Has nothing to do with the economy. $150.00 tickets, no problem. Cannot believe how stupid people are. Then again, yes I can.

So the asshole multi millionaires may black out the playoffs. Just not making enough I guess. So screw the people who can least afford it. 

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 12:08 | Link to Comment Hedgetard55
Hedgetard55's picture

Janet will be buyng that bloated inventory by mid summer.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 12:30 | Link to Comment yogibear
yogibear's picture

The Fed (QEen Yellen)  can own everything. Like North Korea.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 12:14 | Link to Comment trillion_dollar...
trillion_dollar_deficit's picture

This is especially bad when you consider depreciation changes in 2014 were a great incentive to pull demand forward into December. I know of one local dealership in my area that ran ads specifically pertaining to the changes.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 12:23 | Link to Comment RaymondKHessel
RaymondKHessel's picture

Camaro Z28 $75g's!

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 12:33 | Link to Comment replaceme
replaceme's picture

Please tell me that number is made up, or it's got 40K worth of gold in the trunk.  50.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 12:36 | Link to Comment Rising Sun
Rising Sun's picture

Another round of US Gov handouts just around the corner.


Fucking Barry - socialist rodent.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 12:43 | Link to Comment Blano
Blano's picture

"Perhaps less exciting was the 9.2% Y/Y drop in Volt sales. Are Americans losing their fascination with electric cars?"

When did Americans' fascination with electric cars START???  I missed that part.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 12:56 | Link to Comment Colonel Klink
Colonel Klink's picture

Back when Toyota was producing them, well before any Amurikan company was.

They were dreaming of not needing manipulated and over priced gasoline to get to their minimum wage paying service job.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 13:00 | Link to Comment Colonel Klink
Colonel Klink's picture

Hint to the unaware US low information voters.  It's your channel being stuffed!

Wake up and smell the fascism, oh and lies!

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 13:20 | Link to Comment post turtle saver
post turtle saver's picture

corvette sales up only because of introduction of the c7 model... c6 was first introduced in MY 2005... that's a loooong time to go between refresh so the 'vette faithful were already hungry enough to bite... GM then turned around and started delaying orders and delivery on the c7 in the face of that demand... lol way to go numbskulls... Tadge Juechter was caught without his handlers and admitted that we may not see a corvette for the 2016-2017 model years if the 'vette sales don't pick up... of course by then CAFE regs will make traditional v8 corvettes all but an impossibility without some serious price raising due to the unobtainium required to make the numbers... then there's the new truck lineup... $30k for a base work truck? $50k for a decently equipped crew cab? get the fuck out GM... every Chevy and GMC lot I go to (and I go to a lot of them), the MY 2014 trucks are stacked into every corner of the lot and three layers deep, no one is buying even with end of month/year/quarter incentives for dealer sales... they simply want more money for them than people can afford... there was some guest post on here a while back about GM being a momentum buy for 2014... my reply to that is "what momentum"... sales numbers in Q1 '14 are going to be a bloodbath

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 13:48 | Link to Comment Citxmech
Citxmech's picture

At $500/month - I could buy a decent used diesel truck every friggen year - and still have money left over for insurance/gas.  

I bought my used 1st gen Cummins-powered Dodge for $4k 6 years ago (when it was already 18 years old) and has not let me down once.

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 14:21 | Link to Comment post turtle saver
post turtle saver's picture

everything around a cummins drivetrain will turn to dust before it stops working... good choice... 150k miles and they're just starting to get broken in

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 13:40 | Link to Comment The Carbonator
The Carbonator's picture

I will never buy a GM Car.

Think about it.  Why would I subsidize the Democratic party.  The Auto Unions give hundreds of millions to Democratic Candidates.  The Auto Companies give hundreds of millions to Democratic Candidates.  The Entire industry was balled out by the Taxpayers. 

Why would I finance the very people I vote against, campaign against, and donate AGAINST?  WHY!

Fri, 01/03/2014 - 15:13 | Link to Comment Atomizer
Atomizer's picture

Fuck you Government Motors! Keep selling product that no one wants. The next bankruptcy will have already been written on the wall. Good luck in collecting emergency US taxpayer funds to bail out your foreign/domestic losses. People don’t buy shit when told under Government mandate. Free market capitalism will watch the company go under. Chrysler/Fiat will meet the same implosion fate.



Fri, 01/03/2014 - 18:36 | Link to Comment Youri Carma
Youri Carma's picture

Regulators Identified 42% Of Leveraged Risky “Criticized” Car Loans This Year

Chrysler Group Said to Seek Lower Rate on $2.9 Billion Loan
6 December 2013, by Krista Giovacco (Bloomberg)

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!