updated 10/23/2006 6:05:18 PM ET 2006-10-23T22:05:18

Shares of General Motors Corp. rose to a 52-week high Monday in advance of the automaker’s release of third-quarter earnings later this week.

Shares of the world’s largest automaker closed up $1.85, or 5.6 percent, to $35.19 on the New York Stock Exchange after rising to a 52-week high of $35.20 earlier in the day. GM had previously traded between $18.33 and $34 over the past year.

The automaker Wednesday is expected to release more promising results than Ford Motor Co., which announced a $5.8 billion loss in the third quarter Monday.

Thomson Financial’s survey of analysts expects GM to earn 49 cents a share during the third quarter, compared with a loss of $1.92 per share a year ago.

Burnham Securities analyst David Healy said GM has turned the corner with its turnaround plan and said GM’s stock was boosted in comparison to Ford’s third quarter results.

“I think there’s going to be quite a contrast there,” Healy said.

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