If General Motors' saga were a play by Aeschylus, today marks the day when Kent Kresa, GM's interim chairman, returns from a visit to the Oracle at Delphi and informs everyone that the signs are not auspicious. There's been much talk of the bondholder issues that GM faces, and the news today is that the deadline for the debt-for-equity transaction isn't June 1 -- it's this Friday. That's when a bondholder agreement would need to be in place so GM would have everything sorted before its upcoming bond payment is due.

That time-line caused Kresa to say "We have some deadlines rapidly approaching and the probabilities are decreasing we can do outside of bankruptcy." We were fairly sure GM couldn't get a deal done when they had until June 1 merely to get signatures on agreements. If GM has to have everything in place by Friday, and the bondholders as of Tuesday hadn't issued a response to the General's latest offer, then it looks like the Auto Task Force will instruct everyone to, "Please open your books to Chapter 11."

[Source: Wall Street Journal | Image: Bill Pugliano/Getty]