US sells Ally Financial shares, putting an end to auto bailout [UPDATE]
It's over. It's finally over. The automotive bailout, we mean. Surprised? Well, everyone kind of stopped talking about the bailout once Uncle Sam got his fingers out of General Motors and Chrysler, but in reality, the US government has still enjoyed ownership of a chunk auto financier Ally Financial. That is, until now.
The US Treasury unloaded its final 11.4-percent stake in Ally, which equates to about 54.9 million shares. At current trading prices, The Detroit News reports, it's estimated that the Feds will make about $1.25 billion in the auto bailout's final chapter.
That's not to say that taxpayers came out ahead in the bailout. Depending on how you look at it, $10 billion in government funds was lost bankrolling GM and Chrysler. Naturally, it's not that black and white, largely because of the sheer number of jobs saved by the move – estimated to be in the hundreds of thousands by The News. That makes the net impact of the bailout a bit more difficult to calculate.
Of course, in the case of Ally, the impact of the bailout is very, very black and white. Or, just black. American taxpayers ended up making $19.6 billion on three separate investments, totaling $17.2 billion. So that's a dandy $2.4-billion profit.
Not a bad decision, then.
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