General Motors shares gain after credit upgrade back to investment grade

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NEW YORK (MarketWatch) — Shares of General Motors

GM, -2.32%

got a 0.6% lift in after-hours trade Thursday after Standard Poor’s raised the auto maker’s credit rating back above the investment-grade threshold. At the same time, SP lowered its outlook to stable from positive. The rating was raised to BBB- from BB+, with SP citing improving prospects for diversifying profits and improved sales in Europe. “GM’s high-profile recalls so far this year remain a negative factor in our assessment of GM’s business, but we expect ongoing cash outflows associated with the recalls to be manageable in context of the company’s strong liquidity,” SP said in a press release. The rating agency said it expects GM to maintain its top market share in the U.S. in the face of all the recalls. Separately, SP upgraded the credit of General Motors Financial, GM’s financial subsidiary, by two notches to BBB- from BB. GM’s stock closed Thursday down 20% year to date, compared with a 6.4% gain in the SP 500.

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