Friday, July 11, 2008

GM is bleeding from all sides- is it time to say a polite goodbye?

General Motors, once the biggest companies in the world is now on its knees in search of new capital, consumers, respite from oil prices and most importantly profit! The biggest car-marker which once accounted for half the cars in America now just occupies 20% of the market share.

What exactly happened to GM, the first company to post $1 billion in profit in a single year, way back in 1955 ?? Read on....

The last few weeks have been the toughest in General Motors' era, having seen their market capitalization succumb to only $5.6 billion - a ridiculous sum considering their assets almost 10 times that figure.

  1. Credit crisis/Subprime Mortgage has taken its toll in the form of consumers defaulting on their car loans. SUVs and Pickup trucks' resale value have diminished as a result. In turn, the Company bears losses of cars returned after their lease has expired.

  2. Gas prices in America have crossed $4 a gallon, which  has hit the auto industry very hard. The Big Three - GM, Ford, Chrysler have been the worst-hit as they generally made huge cars and fuel-swallowing trucks, and had only a few fuel efficient cars on production.

  3. Roger Lowenstein has said in his article, that  GM  paid  their employees pension funds and health-care benefits so dearly, that they had little to pay to shareholders or design new cars  or research alternative fuels.  He estimates that GM have spent $103 billion from 1993 to 2007 just to pay GM workers  pension, a whopping $90 billion more than they paid shareholders dividends during that period!!

Latest news is that GM has closed 4 truck and SUV factories already, and is set to put its Hummer Brand for auction. Seeing things go too far in the near future, GM is set to make losses of atleast $1 billion a month.

I guess it'll have to got the Merrill Lynch way or Bear Sterns way if it has to save its reputation. Roger reckons that 'bankruptcy is not unthinkable for Detroit's former king'.

What do you have to say for this? Post your comments, opinions, or interesting trivia on GM here.


  1. I only hope the effect of GM is not felt in companies on India. Tata Motor is also trying to chew more than it can digest, God save tata motor also. It seems comparatively Maruti would be better to withstand the storm as having a japanese lineage.

    But one thing for sure that if GM had a bad time, then US economy will also have bad time

  2. You are right Dr. Doom that if GM, one of the biggest companies in the World, were to make losses of billions and billions of dollars, USA's already sad condition will be exacerbated!

  3. Hey Hey chirag
    You mentioned that market cap. of GM stands at only $5.6 billion, thats the value at what it was some 50 years ago, even before they made their first billion dollars in profit. Thats unbelievable considering the value of toyota market cap. at around $150 billion (must be a bit lesser than that)

  4. The figure is correct....however ridiculous it may sound!!

  5. hi, I am sorry to ask you a childish question but may you please tell me the products of general moters

  6. General Motors is the world's biggest car makers and owns many brands such as Chevrolet, Opel among others.

  7. [...] August 16, 2008 by Chirag Jain In recent weeks, General Motors announced a $15 billion loss(read related article) while Ford suffered a $8.7 billion loss. Their Japanese counterparts Toyota and Maruti Suzuki [...]