US Auto Industry Bailout Leaves the United States Treasury With a $9.26 Billion Loss

Even though the mid-2000s were great for any automaker due to rising demand for new cars, the world financial crisis came around to mess everything up, even the proverbial 1 percent. Of course, we are the 99 percent, which is why we should leave the ultra rich to focus on personal means of transport.
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After all, this is autoevolution and cars is this publication’s bread and butter above all else. After the global-scale recession hit the States hard in the latter half of 2008, the automotive industry showed its biggest weaknesses. Alas, General Motors and Chrysler were bailed out by the US Treasury.

Looking back at that moment in time, a lot of jobs and automotive suppliers were at stake if the US hadn’t borrowed the two automakers previously mentioned with a gigantic $79.69 billion. Money that was mostly amassed from taxpayers, that is.

Fast-forward to December 2013, when the US Treasury sold its final General Motors shares, then to the present day and we find ourselves in the middle of a sizable $9.26 billion federal government loss.

Want to have a guess how this loss works out when dividing it per American taxpayer? An official figure of those who actually paid taxes in 2014 is not yet available, but various sources hint at 138 million tax filers. About half of that population pay any federal income tax, so let’s do the maths: $9.26 billion divided by 69 mil equals approximately 134.2 hard-earned bucks per person that really paid taxes.

With the Big Max index standing at $4.8 in the United States in July 2014, that’s 35.3 juicy Big Macs per person. I’m not the type to judge the Obama Administration’s effort to stop the auto industry from going belly up, but numbers are magical in their own little way. Lastly, we need to point out the government made $2.4 billion off Ally Financial, a sum offset by an $11.79 billion loss on General Motors and Chrysler.
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About the author: Mircea Panait
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After a 1:43 scale model of a Ferrari 250 GTO sparked Mircea's interest for cars when he was a kid, an early internship at Top Gear sealed his career path. He's most interested in muscle cars and American trucks, but he takes a passing interest in quirky kei cars as well.
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