Shares of General Motors hit the open market on Thursday and were available to investors for US$33 a piece. The automaker, which filed for bankruptcy last June, had become known as “Government Motors” in recent years thanks to bailouts worth billions of dollars from the Canadian and U.S. government. Now, those same governments are hoping to make at least some of that money back by selling their stake in the company. The U.S. government plans to sell 400 million of its shares in GM, reducing its ownership from 61 per cent to 31 per cent. Canada, on the other hand, is planning a more modest sell-off of just twenty per cent of its shares. For Canada to break even on its $9.5 billion bailout of the automaker, share prices would need to reach $43. In their first hour of trading on Wednesday, the stock was priced at just over $35 on both the New York and Toronto stock exchanges.
Thursday, November 18, 2010