Once the largest automotive manufacturer in the world, General Motors (GM) today remains the largest U.S. carmaker, producing more than 8.3 million cars and trucks annually. The company traces its roots back to the Durant-Dort Carriage Company, which was the country’s leading manufacturer of horse-drawn vehicles by 1904, when it merged with the Buick Motor Company to take on the then-new market for gas-powered vehicles. By 1962, more than half of all cars sold in the U.S. were produced by General Motors.

Today the company, headquartered in Detroit, designs, manufactures, markets, and distributes vehicles and vehicle parts, in addition to financial services. It has facilities in 37 countries and owns brands including Chevrolet, Buick, GMC and Cadillac, as well as overseas brands such as Holden, Wuling, Baojun and Jiefang.

GM’s worldwide sales volume reached 10 million vehicles in 2016 and the company reported $147 billion in revenue in 2018.

Rationale

A direct way to gain exposure to General Motors is to buy the listed shares. But that can be a risky approach, given GM’s bumpy business history and the current state of the U.S. auto industry as a whole. GM famously declared bankruptcy in 2009 following years of declining sales and was later bailed out by the government in 2014 through the Troubled Asset Relief Program.

A solution that can dampen some of that volatility is to buy funds that provide exposure to General Motors and other similar firms, rather than GM shares themselves. After all, the return drivers that will benefit GM might also benefit other similar firms in automotive, manufacturing, and financial services. As investment management is gradually moving to the construction of portfolios using ETFs and mutual funds in addition to single stocks, investors would do well to consider gain exposure to firms like GM through these types of funds.

Investing in GM 

A search on Magnifi suggests that investors can gain access to GM via a number of different funds and ETFs, including those shown below.  

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