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GM Bailout Ends as U.S. Sells Last of ‘Government Motors’

General Motors Co. is free from U.S. taxpayer ownership almost half a decade after first receiving government aid, underscoring the domestic auto industry’s rebound from the deepest downturn since the Great Depression.

The Treasury Department’s sale yesterday of final shares of GM signals the end of Government Motors, as the nation’s largest automaker was derisively labeled by some critics after the U.S. government stepped in with emergency funding in 2008. Bailouts from the George W. Bush and Barack Obama administrations helped GM avoid liquidation and reorganize in a 2009 bankruptcy that has given new life to the company.