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Dec. 11 (Bloomberg) -- The Senate rejected a $14 billion bailout plan for U.S. automakers, in effect ending congressional efforts to aid General Motors Corp. and Chrysler LLC, which may run out of cash early next year.


“I dread looking at Wall Street tomorrow,” Majority Leader Harry Reid said before the vote in Washington. “It’s not going to be a pleasant sight.”


The Bush administration will “evaluate our options in light of the breakdown in Congress,” spokesman Tony Fratto said.


The Senate thwarted the bailout plan when a bid to cut off debate on the bill the House passed yesterday fell short of the required 60 votes. The vote on ending the debate was 52 in favor, 35 against. Earlier, negotiations on an alternate bailout plan failed.


GM said in a statement, “We are deeply disappointed that agreement could not be reached tonight in the Senate despite the best bipartisan efforts. We will assess all of our options to continue our restructuring and to obtain the means to weather the current economic crisis.”


Reid said millions of Americans, “not only the autoworkers, but people who sell cars, car dealerships, people who work on cars,” will be affected. “It’s going to be a very, very bad Christmas for a lot of people as a result of what takes place here tonight.”


Asian stocks and U.S. index futures immediately began falling after Reid’s comments. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index slumped 2.2 percent to 86.13 as of 12:33 p.m. Tokyo time, while March futures on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index slipped 3.4 percent.


‘Deja Vu’


“Remember when the first financial bailout bill failed” in Congress in late September, said Martin Marnick, head of equity trading at Helmsman Global Trading Ltd. in Hong Kong. “The markets in Asia started the slide. Deja vu, this looks like it’s happening again.” Congress approved a financial-rescue plan weeks later.


Senator George Voinovich, an Ohio Republican, urged the Bush administration to save the automakers by tapping the $700 billion bailout fund approved earlier this year for the financial industry.


“If this is the end, then I think they have to step in and do it -- it’s needed even though they don’t want to do it,” Voinovich said.


Connecticut Democrat Christopher Dodd, who helped lead the negotiations, said the final unresolved issue was a Republican demand that unionized autoworkers accept a reduction in wages next year, rather than later, to match those of U.S. autoworkers who work for foreign-owned companies, such as Toyota Motor Corp.




“More than saddened, I’m worried this evening about what we’re doing with an iconic industry,” Dodd said. “In the midst of deeply troubling economic times we are going to add to that substantially.”


Republican Bob Corker of Tennessee, who negotiated with Dodd, said, “I think there’s still a way to make this happen.”


Earlier today, White House spokeswoman Dana Perino warned that an agreement was necessary for the U.S. economy.


“We believe the economy is in such a weakened state right now that adding another possible loss of 1 million jobs is just something” it cannot “sustain at the moment,” Perino said.


Also earlier, South Dakota Republican John Thune suggested that if talks collapsed, the Bush administration might aid automakers with funds from the financial-rescue plan approved by Congress in October.


“I think that is where they go next,” Thune said. “I wouldn’t be surprised if they explore all options.” The Bush administration thus far has opposed that option, which was favored by Democrats.


To contact the reporters on this story: Nicholas Johnston in Washington at njohnston3@bloomberg.netJohn Hughes in Washington at Jhughes5@bloomberg.net

Last Updated: December 11, 2008 23:34 EST




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On avait l'habitude de les nommer les Big Three. Peut-être devrait-on commencer à les surnommer les Dwarfed Three !!



Pourquoi pas les Trois Losers?


Ou les Trois Stoogies?


Corporations dirigés par des leaders incompétents qui ont coulé leurs industries en exigeant en plus des salaires de plusieurs dizaines de millions de dollars pour camoufler leurs incompétences. It makes me puke.

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White House considers auto rescue


The White House says it is considering using money earmarked to rescue the US banking industry to bail out the country's struggling carmakers.

The White House said a disorderly bankruptcy in the motor industry would be a huge blow which the US economy could not withstand.


A $14bn (£9.4bn) bail-out deal for the US car industry failed to get Senate support, raising fears of job cuts.


Meanwhile General Motors said it was temporarily stopping some production.


And Honda is also to cut back output in North America.


GM, which has been pleading for an emergency government loan to avert collapse, said it would halt 30% of its North American production "in response to rapidly deteriorating market conditions".


It saw vehicle sales fall 41% in November, when overall US car sales fell 26% industry wide.


The temporary shutdowns will affect 14 US factories as well as three in Canada and three in Mexico, reducing output by 250,000 vehicles in the first three months of 2009.


"The speed and severity of the US auto market's decline has been unprecedented in recent weeks as consumers reel from the collapse of the financial markets and the resulting lack of credit for vehicle financing," it added.



Earlier this year, the US approved a $700bn (£467bn) bail-out for the finance industry, known as the TARP programme.


It had previously been reluctant to use this money for other industries but White House spokeswoman Dana Perino said it would consider other options, including the use of the TARP program, to prevent a collapse of troubled automakers.


She added that it would be "irresponsible" to further damage the economy by allowing the Detroit car companies to fail.


"The current weakened state of the economy is such that it could not withstand a body blow like a disorderly bankruptcy in the auto industry," she added.


President-elect Barack Obama said he was disappointed that the Senate failed to act, adding that "millions of jobs rely directly or indirectly on a viable auto industry".


"My hope is that the administration and the Congress will still find a way to give the industry the temporary assistance it needs while demanding the long-term-restructuring that is absolutely required," he said.



The Big Three - Chrysler, General Motors and Ford - employ 250,000 people directly, and many more indirectly, in companies making auto parts and car dealerships.


The United Automobile Workers (UAW) union on Friday warned that if a bail-out was not forthcoming, the result would be "devastating."


The union's president, Ron Gettelfinger said he was confident that there were "enough sane" people in Washington to find a solution despite the Senate's defeat of the bail out bill.


Tense and emotional

The White House had said the plan was American carmakers' "best chance to avoid a disorderly bankruptcy".


Shares fell sharply around the world after the bail-out was rejected - with carmakers among the hardest hit.


However the glimmer of hope that the government would step in to help carmakers helped the Dow Jones index pull back early losses to finish ahead.


In Asia, stocks in Toyota, Honda and Nissan all lost at least 10%.


The Republicans refused to back the bail-out after the UAW union refused to cut wages next year to bring them into line with their Japanese counterparts. UAW's current contract with the car makers expires in 2011.


"We were about three words away from a deal," said Republican Senator Bob Corker.


"We solved everything substantively and about three words keep us from reaching a conclusion."


The BBC's Andy Gallacher in Washington said it was always going to be a battle to get the US Senate to approve the $14bn bridging loan.


With a majority of just one in the Senate, the Democrats needed some Republicans to back the bill as some in their own party were expected to vote against it.


The atmosphere in the Senate was tense and at times emotional, our correspondent says, as the Democrats made last-minute pleas to get their Republican counterparts to vote in favour of helping America's biggest car domestic makers, Ford, Chrysler and General Motors.


Millions affected

The failure of the bail-out raises the prospect of huge job losses.


The Senate majority leader, Harry Reid, said he was "terribly disappointed" when it became clear the vote had collapsed, calling it "a loss for the country".


"Millions of Americans, not only the auto workers but people who sell cars, car dealerships, people who work on cars are going to be directly impacted and affected."


The deal would have given the Big Three carmakers access to emergency funding to help them cope with the sharp downturn in sales because of the global financial crisis.


General Motors and Chrysler have said they risk ruin without immediate aid. Ford says it may need funds in the future.


The bosses of the three firms had previously asked for $34bn from Congress.


They have all seen sales fall sharply this year in the US, partly reflecting an industry-wide fall, and partly because their large gas-guzzling vehicles are no longer what customers want.

Story from BBC NEWS:



Published: 2008/12/13 05:10:43 GMT



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Pourquoi pas les Trois Losers?


Ou les Trois Stoogies?


Corporations dirigés par des leaders incompétents qui ont coulé leurs industries en exigeant en plus des salaires de plusieurs dizaines de millions de dollars pour camoufler leurs incompétences. It makes me puke.

Ce genre de haine pour des corporations est bizarre. IMO, GMs are 10x nicer than any Toyota.

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In which way ? Nicer looking ? Since when look is important when buying a car ? If it was the case, all cars would look good but since over 20 years I personnally find cars to be ugly (and they get uglier every year !!).

GM is as reliable if not moreso than Toyota on average. GM also makes better performance vehicles, better trucks, better luxury, etc, etc.


The fact that GMs are on average much nicer looking than Toyotas is a bonus. Although, personally, I would only buy a car that I find nice looking.


I don't mean to be shallow, but a nice car is a lot like a nice woman. If she is hard-looking, well obviously that will make her a lot less appealing. ;)

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Ce genre de haine pour des corporations est bizarre. IMO, GMs are 10x nicer than any Toyota.



What hate for corporations?


I am talking about the high leadership of those companies. I mean these guys are paid millions of dollars a year ( plus bonuses and what not ) to exercice VISION. They are paid high salarie in exchange for a vision of what the car industry and consumer demand will be in the future. They have FAILED miserably. And please do not fall to their failed argument of the present financial crisis. Their utter LACK of vision has been responsible for the downfall of their companies and that began quite some time ago. Competion has been biting at them for some time and they are now pathetically blaming the financial crisis with some degree of success. I have no problems with visionaries being paid millions of dollars a year in a company. But results must follow. These guys failed MISERABLY!

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