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Cracker Squire

THE MUSINGS OF A TRADITIONAL SOUTHERN DEMOCRAT

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Location: Douglas, Coffee Co., The Other Georgia, United States

Sid in his law office where he sits when meeting with clients. Observant eyes will notice the statuette of one of Sid's favorite Democrats.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

The disconnect continues: I was upset Government Motors cars were going to be made overseas; I didn't know GM would be owned by overseas investors.

A 5-8-09 post entitled "Who said life was simple: Under Restructuring, GM To Build More Cars Overseas" noted:

The U.S. government is pouring billions into General Motors in hopes of reviving the domestic economy, but when the automaker completes its restructuring plan, many of the company's new jobs will be filled by workers overseas.

According to an outline the company has been sharing privately with Washington legislators, the number of cars that GM sells in the United States and builds in Mexico, China and South Korea will roughly double.

[Former labor secretary Robert B. Reich asks:] "If GM is going to do more of its production overseas, then why exactly are we saving GM?"


Now the real kick in the butt comes. Guess who is going to own a significant stake in Government Motors after U.S. taxpayers spent $50 billion to carry the company through bankruptcy reorganization.

From The Wall Street Journal:

In a sign of the changing fortunes of the world's top two economies, China's biggest auto maker, SAIC Motor Corp., is negotiating to acquire a stake of about 1% in General Motors Co. worth about $500 million, according to a person familiar with the matter.

The U.S. auto maker also is prepared to sell more than $1 billion worth of shares to sovereign wealth funds in the Middle East and Asia. Combined, the sales would give foreign investors roughly 16% of the shares to be sold next week under an initial public offering of stock, and give them a stake of some 4% in the Detroit auto maker. GM declined to comment on the investment talks.

The issue of overseas investors buying GM shares in the company's IPO has been a sensitive one for the U.S. government, which plans to reduce its 61% stake in the auto maker to around 35% through the IPO.

The U.S. Treasury has to walk a fine line. Attracting foreign investors will be a key to pulling off a listing of this size. But the Treasury has also had to weigh the possible political outcry if investors abroad are allowed to acquire a significant stake in GM, after U.S. taxpayers spent $50 billion to carry the company through bankruptcy reorganization, people familiar with the matter have said.

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