Treasury prices GM stock sale at $34.41/share

WASHINGTON Thu Jun 6, 2013 6:09pm EDT

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Treasury said on Thursday it was selling 30 million shares of General Motors Co (GM.N) at $34.41 each, raising roughly $1.03 billion as part of its ongoing effort to exit from the bailed-out company and reduce losses to taxpayers.

The public offering, which coincided with GM's re-entry to the Standard & Poor's 500 index, will take the amount recouped for U.S. taxpayers so far to $32.53 billion. That represents a $16.97 billion shortfall from the original $49.5 billion bailout price tag. GM shares closed on Thursday at $34.44.

Treasury officials have said the goal was not to turn a profit but to save U.S. jobs. GM's rescue, as the nation struggled to survive a severe recession, helped keep the U.S. auto industry alive. The costs of it going under would have been much higher, official argue.

With the sale, Treasury will still hold 189.2 million shares. It has said that it plans to completely exit the holding by April 2014. It would have to sell the shares at an average price of $89.69 each to spare taxpayers from any loss.

The offering was taking place along with the sale of 20 million shares of GM stock held by the UAW Retiree Medical Benefits Trust. The Treasury said that at the $34.41 price per share, the UAW could expect to recoup $688 million.

The exit of Treasury will eliminate the stigma of government ownership - some critics dubbed the company "Government Motors" - that GM executives said has hurt sales.

In addition, GM's return to the S&P 500 is expected to prompt stronger demand for its stock. Companies often benefit from a bump up in stock price when added to the S&P, in part because some funds that track the index need to hold the stock.

(Reporting by Alister Bull; Editing by Dan Grebler and Carol Bishopric)

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Comments (1)
lucky12345 wrote:
While the US taxpayers lose 20 Billion overall on the GM bail-out for the unions and their vote!

Jun 06, 2013 7:21pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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California state worker Albert Jagow (L) goes over his retirement options with Calpers Retirement Program Specialist JeanAnn Kirkpatrick at the Calpers regional office in Sacramento, California October 21, 2009. Calpers, the largest U.S. public pension fund, manages retirement benefits for more than 1.6 million people, with assets comparable in value to the entire GDP of Israel. The Calpers investment portfolio had a historic drop in value, going from a peak of $250 billion in the fall of 2007 to $167 billion in March 2009, a loss of about a third during that period. It is now around $200 billion. REUTERS/Max Whittaker   (UNITED STATES) - RTXPWOZ

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