GM CFO sees "more stable" chip supplies in 2022, reaffirms 2021 outlook

The new GM logo is seen on the facade of the General Motors headquarters in Detroit, Michigan, U.S., March 16, 2021. Picture taken March 16, 2021. REUTERS/Rebecca Cook/Files

DETROIT, Sept 10 (Reuters) - General Motors Co (GM.N) Chief Financial Officer Paul Jacobson reaffirmed the automaker's 2021 profit outlook and said the company expects a "more stable year" in 2022 for semiconductor supplies.

Jacobson said during a conference call with investors that GM still expects to deliver pre-tax profits for 2021 in the range of $11.5 billion to $13.5 billion forecast last month, and said 10% pre-tax margins for GM's North American operations are "quite achievable" in 2022 even as the company ramps up investment in electric vehicles.

Despite the uncertainty created by the continuing pandemic and supply chain disruptions, Jacobson said GM "does not want to drive a level of COVID austerity into the business" and will not pull back its investment plans.

Jacobson cautioned that GM's third quarter wholesale deliveries could be down by 200,000 vehicles because of chip shortages, and because GM shifted production into the second quarter as it managed semiconductor supplies.

Jacobson said GM expects to get reimbursed by electric vehicle battery partner LG Chem (051910.KS) for costs related to the recent recall of Chevrolet Bolt EVs due to fires related to battery defects. GM has set aside $1.8 billion in total for the recall. Jacobson said GM and LG are in "high level conversations" about the division of costs.

Reporting By Joe White

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