General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) released the results from its December quarter, posting a 2% increase in profits year over year and record North American earnings but missing expectations by a significant margin because of declines in international markets. The automaker reported earnings of 57 cents per share or $913 million, compared with earnings of 54 cents a share or $892 million in the same quarter a year ago. Excluding one-time items, GM earned 67 cents a share. GM also reported a 3% rise in revenue, bringing it to $40.5 billion.

General Motors

Analysts had been expecting General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) to report earnings of 88 cents on $40.8 billion in revenue.

Breaking down General Motors’ earnings

For the full 2013 year, General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) reported a 22% decline in earnings which dropped to $2.38 per share or $3.8 billion. Excluding items, the automaker’s earnings were $3.18 per share. The items reported by GM include “strategic decisions taken to improve the company’s future competitiveness in key global markets.” Management remained positive on the company looking ahead into this year.

“Launches of some of the best vehicles in our history combined with significant improvements in our core business led to a solid year,” said General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) CEO Mary Barra in a statement. “The tough decisions made during the year will further strengthen our operations. We’re now in execution mode and our sole focus will be on delivering results on a global basis.”

Examining General Motors’ segment results

General Motors Company (NYSE:GM)’s North American segment reported record earnings for the full year of $7.5 billion adjusted earnings. For the fourth quarter, adjusted EBIT was $1.9 billion.

The automaker lost money in Europe, however, posting adjusted losses of $300 million for the quarter, although that loss was less than the $800 million the company lost in the same quarter a year ago. The company’s international operations reported adjusted EBIT of $200 million for the fourth quarter, which was a decline from $700 million in the same quarter a year ago. In South America, General Motors Company (NYSE:GM)’s South American operations broke even during the fourth quarter, while its GM Financial division reported $200 million in earnings before taxes for the quarter.