Moments ago GM, battered by a recall scandal, reported that in April when public attention to its disgraced executives and business practices was greatest, it managed to beat sellside estimates of 251K units, or a 5.7% increase from a year earlier, and instead sales rose a consensus-beating 6.9%, to 254,076, if still down from the 256,047 sold in March.
And yet, as usual, there was the now traditional book-cooking going on at GM, which only managed to "beat" estimates thanks to the tried and true gimmick of channel stuffing. Indeed: after hitting an all time high of 815K cars parked at dealer lots last month, or 83 days of supply, in April GM's channel stuffing rose to a fresh all time high of 826K, at 85 days, in effect suggesting that had it not been for the extra 11K parked but "sold" cars, GM sales would really have been up just 2.3% Y/Y, missing estimates, and down 13K from March. Hardly the picture of health the fudged data makes it out to be.
But, like the market, like stock earnings, like the economy, why bother with real unadjusted, "non-GAAP", ex-Fed and HFT reality when one can just manipulate their way to 100% confidence and complete prosperity.
As for GM, don't worry - any minute now some Russian oligarch (cause ordinary Americans are once again out of money since their saving cratered in March) will swoop in and buy that almost one million of GM cars parked, and rusting pleasantly, with GM dealers.