General Motors files for bankruptcy protection

Posted on June 2, 2009. Filed under: Uncategorized |

By DAN STRUMPF and KIMBERLY S. JOHNSON, AP Auto Writers Dan Strumpf And Kimberly S. Johnson, Ap Auto Writers Mon Jun 1, 7:11 pm ET

NEW YORK – General Motorsfiled for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection Monday as part of the Obama administration’s plan to shrink the automaker to a sustainable size and give a majority ownership stake to the federal government.

For the full story:  http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090601/ap_on_bi_ge/us_automakers

 

GM’s bankruptcy filing is the fourth-largest in U.S. history and the largest for an industrial company. The company said it has $172.81 billion in debt and $82.29 billion in assets.

“The General Motors board of directors authorized the filing of a Chapter 11 case with regret that this path proved necessary despite the best efforts of so many,” GM Chairman Kent Kresa said in a written statement. “Today marks a new beginning for General Motors. … The board is confident that this New GM can operate successfully in the intensely competitive U.S. market and around the world.”

As it reorganizes, the fallen icon of American industry will rely on $30 billion of additional financial assistance from the Treasury Department and $9.5 billion from Canada. That’s on top of about $20 billion in taxpayer money GM already has received in the form of low-interest loans.

Late Monday, U.S. bankruptcy court judgeRobert Gerber gave interim approval for the Detroit-based automaker’s use of a total of $33.3 billion in bankruptcy financing, with $15 billion available for use over the next three weeks. He will rule on final approval of the financing on June 25. Gerber also approved GM’s sale procedures, setting a sale approval hearing for June 30.

“Our agreement with the U.S. Treasury and the governments of Canada and Ontario will create a leaner, quicker more customer and completely product-focused company, one that’s more cost competitive and has a competitive balance sheet,” CEO Fritz Henderson said at a news conference in New York. “This new GM will be built from the strongest parts of our business, including our best brands and products.”

The Detroit automaker said warranty coverage, service and customer support will continue uninterrupted, plants will continue to make cars and trucks, and essential suppliers and GM’s 235,000 employees worldwide will continue to be paid. GMAC Financial Services said in a statement that it will continues to provide automotive financing to GM and Chrysler dealers and customers, and the federal Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. said workers’ pension plans remain safe…..

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