WSJ: US to Sell GM Stake at $11 Billion Loss

Thursday, 21 Apr 2011 08:04 AM

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The government plans to sell most of its remaining stake in General Motors in the coming months and lose $11 billion in the process, The Wall Street Journal reports.

With taxpayer money, the government rescued General Motors for $50 billion in 2009

To get that money back, the U.S. Treasury will need to sell its remaining stake of around 500 million shares at $53 apiece.

gmceo200gtyy.jpg
GM Chairman and CEO Dan Akerson (Getty photo)
GM is currently trading around $30, even dipping below that figure, on the New York Stock Exchange, below its $33-a-share November initial public offering.

"Planning for the sale of our remaining GM stock is still at an early stage, and the IPO lock-up does not expire until late May," says a Treasury spokesperson, according to the Journal.

"At that point, we will consider all of our options, based on our twin goals of protecting taxpayers' interests and exiting as soon as practicable."

Rising fuel prices, production snags and management turnovers have hurt the company's stock price.

GM's $23.1 billion IPO in November reduced the U.S. government's stake in the automaker to 26.5 percent from 61 percent.

As a condition of the IPO, the Treasury isn't able to sell additional holdings before May 22.

The company, meanwhile, raised discounts to $400 per vehicle in January and February with the aim of boosting sales, which didn't help stock prices at all.

Company CEO Dan Akerson says he supports the move. "I feel pretty good about that. I think we're in pretty good shape," Akerson says, according to the Associated Press.

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