General Motors Sees Major Market Shift, US Outpaces China

By Richard Mason


GM's global sales landscape transforms as US numbers surpass China's for the first time in years, highlighting a major market shift.

GM's Renaissance Center Headquarters stands tall under the Detroit sky, its emblem illuminated as a beacon of the city's automotive legacy.
US Sales Soar as GM's China Market Slips

What You Need To Know

General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM) experienced a significant shift in its global sales dynamics, with its vehicle sales in China falling behind those in the US for the first time since 2009. This change indicates a growing preference among Chinese consumers for domestic auto brands.

In 2022, GM's vehicle deliveries in China decreased by approximately 9% to 2.1 million, a notable decline from its peak in 2017 when it delivered 4.04 million vehicles in the country. In contrast, GM's US sales saw a robust increase of 14%, reaching 2.59 million vehicles.

This trend is not unique to GM. Other international car manufacturers, like Volkswagen AG, are also facing challenges in China due to the rise of local electric car producers. These Chinese companies, including BYD Co., are gaining a significant foothold in their domestic market, often at the expense of global players.

The shift in market dynamics marks a pivotal moment for the automotive industry, reflecting changing consumer preferences and the growing competitiveness of Chinese auto brands in the world's largest automotive market.

Sign up for Investing Intel Newsletter

Why This Is Important for Retail Investors

  1. Market Dynamics and Company Valuation: The shift in sales from China to the US for General Motors Co. directly impacts the company's revenue streams and profitability. China has been a major market for GM, and changes in this market can significantly affect the company's overall financial health. Investors need to understand these dynamics to make informed decisions about the company's current valuation and future growth prospects.

  2. Adaptability and Strategic Response: This change underscores GM's need to adapt its strategies in different markets. For retail investors, the company's response to these market shifts is a key indicator of its agility and long-term sustainability. A company that can effectively navigate and adapt to changing market conditions is often seen as a more secure and potentially profitable investment.

  3. Global Economic Indicators: The sales trends of major corporations like GM serve as indicators of broader economic trends, particularly in significant markets like the US and China. Retail investors can use this information to gauge the health of the automotive sector and the wider economy, informing their investment decisions in related industries and stocks.

  4. Competitive Landscape: The rise of domestic brands in China, impacting GM's sales, highlights the increasing competitiveness in the global auto market. Knowledge of this can help retail investors assess GM's market position and its ability to maintain or grow its market share against rising local and international competitors.

  5. Electric Vehicle (EV) Market Growth: The shift in consumer preference towards local brands, especially in the EV sector, is significant. GM's ability to innovate and capture a share of the growing EV market can be a critical factor in its future growth and profitability, influencing investment decisions.

How Can You Use This Information?

Here are some of the investing ideas that can be explored using this information:

Value Investing

Investors might see GM as a potential value investment. The company's adaptation to changing market conditions and its strategies to recover or stabilize its sales in China could signal a long-term value. If the stock is currently undervalued due to these market shifts, it could be a good opportunity for value investors looking for companies with solid fundamentals but temporarily depressed prices.

Value investing searches for undervalued companies that trade for less than their intrinsic values, with the expectation that they will eventually be recognized by the market.

Growth Investing

The rise in U.S. sales and GM's potential pivot or increased focus on the electric vehicle (EV) market could be seen as growth drivers. Investors interested in growth might look at GM's innovation strategies, investments in EV technology, and market expansion plans to decide if the company has strong future growth potential, especially in the growing EV market.

Growth investing focuses on stocks of companies expected to grow at an above-average rate compared to other stocks in the market; learn more in our article titled 'What is Growth Investing?'.

Momentum Investing

Given the current trends, momentum investors might look at the broader industry trends, such as the shift towards domestic brands in China and the growing preference for EVs. Investing in Chinese domestic auto brands or companies that are leading in EV technology might align with a momentum strategy, capitalizing on the current market trends and consumer preferences.

Momentum investing rides the wave of existing market trends by buying assets that have shown an upward price trend and selling those in a downtrend.

Dividend Investing

For those focused on income through dividends, GM's financial health and its ability to maintain or increase dividends in light of these market changes would be a key factor. If GM shows stability and the ability to sustain or grow its dividend payouts, it could be an attractive option for dividend investors.

Dividend investing targets companies that regularly distribute a portion of their earnings to shareholders as dividends.

Global Diversification

This situation highlights the importance of diversification in different markets. Investors might consider diversifying their portfolio by investing in other auto companies that have a stronger presence in markets where GM is facing challenges, or in other sectors that could benefit from the trends affecting GM, such as local Chinese brands or EV technology providers.

Global Diversification takes geographic diversification further by spreading investments across a range of countries and global markets to capitalize on worldwide growth.

Read What Others Are Saying

Sign up for Investing Intel Newsletter

What you should read next:

Popular ETFs

Some investors prefer to invest in stocks via an exchange-traded fund for ease and reduced risk. Some popular ETFs include the following:

  • Large-Caps: Vanguard Mega Cap ETF (MGC)

  • Mid-Caps: Vanguard Mid-Cap ETF (VO)

  • Small-Caps: Vanguard Small-Cap ETF (VB)

  • Growth: iShares Core S&P U.S. Growth ETF (IUSG)

  • Value: iShares Core S&P US Value ETF (IUSV)

  • Emerging Markets: Vanguard FTSE Emerging Markets ETF (VWO)

  • Developed Markets: Vanguard FTSE Developed Markets ETF (VEA)

Explore more on these topics:



This article does not provide any financial advice and is not a recommendation to deal in any securities or product. Investments may fall in value and an investor may lose some or all of their investment. Past performance is not an indicator of future performance.

Richard Mason does not hold any position in the stock(s) and/or financial instrument(s) mentioned in the above article.

Richard Mason has not been paid to produce this piece by the company or companies mentioned above.

Digitonic Ltd, the owner of, does not hold a position or positions in the stock(s) and/or financial instrument(s) mentioned in the above article.

Digitonic Ltd, the owner of, has not been paid for the production of this piece by the company or companies mentioned above.

Sign up for Investing Intel Newsletter