GM Jam: Keeping Parts Moving Proves Difficult

09/08/2008 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011
  • Reuters, AP

Even as CNBC aired a documentary this week called "Saving General Motors" -- in which GM's Bob Lutz drives a Chevy Volt and seems almost relieved it works -- the automaker is having to work awfully hard this week to keep things moving.

Reuters reports that GM is loaning parts maker Delphi an additional $300 million:

Delphi, in court papers filed Wednesday, said GM would increase its loan to the auto parts supplier to $950 million from $650 million so Delphi can maintain a minimum level of liquidity.


The decision by the investor group, which came amid a sharp downturn in U.S. auto sales and more risk-averse financial markets, was seen as raising the cost of the reorganization process for GM, Delphi's former parent and largest customer.

GM is also reportedly pleading with its ad agencies to cut fees and save the company around $20 million, suggesting that every penny is counting right now for the auto giant.

General Motors Corp has asked its advertising agencies to slash their fees by as much as 20 percent this year and next, the Wall Street Journal said on Thursday.


According to Bernstein, U.S. auto advertising is likely to fall to $15 billion in 2008 from $18 billion last year, the paper said.

Meanwhile, its stock suffers the consequences of a big second-quarter loss in an already dismal year. Per AP:

GM's shares have taken a beating over the past year, as it has worked to restructure itself in the face of declining U.S. demand and a shift in consumer preferences away from trucks and sport utility vehicles.

It has gotten ugly enough that Henry Blodget blogged for the Huffington Post that GM CEO Rick Wagoner ought to be looking over his shoulder.

If GM's stock price falls much farther, the company might make an attractive buyout candidate. It would be interesting to see whether, say, Steve Schwarzman's Blackstone would be as enamored of Wagoner's performance as George Fisher is.

::Henry Blodget: GM's CEO Has Done a Horrendous Job -- So Why Does the Board Still Support Him?