U.S. Receives $1.2 Billion From October Sales of GM Stock

The U.S. Treasury Department said net proceeds of its sales of General Motors Co. shares totaled about $1.2 billion last month as the government winds down its investment in the automaker.

Through the end of October, the U.S. government had recovered $37.2 billion of the $51 billion it spent to bail out and restructure Detroit-based GM, the Treasury said yesterday in a report to Congress. The report doesn’t say how many shares were sold during the month or at what price.

GM slipped less than 0.1 percent to $36.66 at the close in yesterday New York. The shares have gained 27 percent so far this year, compared with a 24 percent rise in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index.

Treasury said in a September report its GM stake had been reduced to 7.3 percent. Following its 2009 bankruptcy, the automaker went public again in 2010, leaving the U.S. Treasury as GM’s largest shareholder. The government began selling down its stake in December as GM repurchased $5.5 billion of shares. The Treasury said at that time it would sell the rest of its remaining shares within 15 months. The U.S. is the third-largest GM shareholder, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

The government may complete selling its GM stake before the year is over, Chief Executive Officer Dan Akerson has said. The U.S. investment in GM was the biggest piece of an industry bailout that became a centerpiece of President Barack Obama’s first term.

The government is exiting GM as investor confidence in the company has risen while the company introduces 18 new or redesigned vehicles in the U.S. The product surge is transforming its lineup into one of the freshest in the industry from one of the oldest.

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