Saturday, August 2, 2008

G.M. Loses $15.5 Billion

The General Motors Corporation reported a stunning second-quarter loss of $15.5 billion on Friday because of a dramatic decline in United States sales and charges for job cuts, plant closings and the falling value of trucks and sport utility vehicles.

G.M., the largest American automaker, said it lost $6.3 billion on operations in the quarter that ended June 30, and its worldwide revenues fell 18 percent.

But the company’s overall loss was inflated by $9.1 billion in special charges that included $3.3 billion for buyouts of hourly workers and $2.8 billion related to the bankruptcy filing of its former parts unit, the Delphi Corporation.

The dismal earnings reflected the impact of steadily falling vehicles sales in the overall United States market, and a huge shift by consumers away from the trucks and S.U.V.’s that were once G.M.’s most profitable vehicles.

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