Treasury Department Gains $11.7 Bn from GM's IPO

The US Treasury Department has received $11.7 billion following the sale of 358.5 million shares of stock in General Motors Co. Its stake shrunk to 37 percent from 61 percent after the IPO, and could drop to as low as 33 percent. This means the Government has now recovered $252 billion from the Trouble Asset Relief Program (TARP), the $700 billion fund used to bail out automakers, insurance companies and banks.

"Our temporary assistance for the U.S. auto industry saved more than 1 million jobs across the industrial heartland of America and, like the overall TARP program, is on track to cost far less than anyone had first anticipated," said Tim Massad, the Treasury's acting assistant secretary for financial stability.

"General Motors' successful initial public offering is another important milestone in our efforts to recover TARP funds on behalf of the American taxpayer."

On Tuesday, the Treasury received the money, minus $90 million, accounting for $0.25 per share that it had to pay brokers for the IPO. It is accustomed for the proceeds to close three days after the launch of an IPO.

Although a part of the bailout debt was paid, the Treasury could lose about $9 billion of the $50 billion it handed out to GM. For the taxpayers to break even, the remaining stock needs to sell for an average of $52.80 per share.

GM's stock, like the rest of the market, fell Tuesday, closing at $33.25, down $0.83 or 2.4 percent.

GM's IPO underwriters have until Dec. 18 to sell an additional 15% of government shares, 53.8 million at $33 each. If they exercise that option in full, the Treasury Department would receive a further $1.8 billion.

By year's end, the government will have recovered at least $21.2 billion of its $49.5 billion GM bailout.
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