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Ford Motor Company's third-quarter earnings report released earlier today basically said, "Times are bad, but we'll be aight." General Motors' just-released earnings report for the same time period says "Holy effin' hell, we're running out of things to cut, please help us!" We'll try and it keep it simple, but the main number is $2.5 billion, as in $2.5 billion lost during the Q3 '08. That compares with a $42.5 billion loss this time last year, but the bulk of that was attributable to a one-time

General Motors announced its third quarter earnings today and surprised Wall Street by revealing a $38.6 billion charge on the books that represents a change in tax accounting required by the Financial Accounting Standards Board's Statement of Financial Accounting Standards. That huge number represents tax credits the automaker can't account for until it actually earns the taxable income to which it applies.

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