DETROIT: General Motors reported a second quarter loss of $3.2 billion (€2.53bn; £1.73bn). Hardly good news for the beleaguered auto titan one would have thought - but the latest numbers cheered investors who had anticipated far worse!

The results also mustered optimism about chairman/ceo Rick Wagoner's turnaround efforts, although the auto titan conceded it must make more progress in revamping its core operations.

The results include $4.3 billion in charges - most significantly a buyout program that will trim its hourly work force by about a third this year. The company is seeking to recover from a $10.6 billion loss last year and reverse its deteriorating market share in its home market.

Before the charges, GM's results benefited from cost-cutting efforts and a 12% surge in revenue.