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Troubled road led to GM's breakdown

Here are the principal events marking GM's troubled path over the past 18 months, with the once mighty automaker expected to file for bankruptcy Monday.

autos Updated: Jun 01, 2009 09:30 IST

Here are the principal events marking GM's troubled path over the past 18 months, with the once mighty automaker expected to file for bankruptcy Monday.

January 2008
* Toyota comes close to overtaking GM as the world's biggest automaker, a title GM has held since 1931. GM sells 9.369 million vehicles in 2007 while the Japanese automaker sold 9.366 million.

February 2008
* GM posts a 38.7 billion dollar annual loss for 2007 and announces plans to eliminate the jobs of 74,000 unionized workers in the United States.

March 2008
* A two-month long strike begins at key supplier American Axle. GM is forced to shut many of its plants and takes a 1.8 billion dollar hit.

April 2008
* GM slashes production of trucks and sport utility vehicles by 140,000 units in the wake of poor sales.

July 2008
* GM announces plans to slash its white collar workforce by 20 percent, double truck production cuts to 300,000 units and bolster its liquidity by 15 billion dollars through internal operating actions, asset sales and the capital markets.

August 2008
* GM reports a second quarter loss of 15.5 billion dollars.

September 2008
* GM marks its 100th anniversary.

October 2008
* Merger talks between GM and Chrysler heat up as US sales collapse amid a deepening recession.

November 2008
* GM announces October sales fell 45 percent amid the US auto industry's worst performance in the post World War II era.
* GM, Chrysler and Ford executives head to Washington to request billions in emergency loans.
* Merger talks with Chrysler are dropped.

December 2008
* GM announces plans to cut another 31,000 jobs by 2012 and idles a third of its US factories.
*The White House offers GM and Chrysler 13.3 billion dollars in emergency loans.
* The Canadian government offers 3.3 billion US dollars in aid to GM and Chrysler.

January 2009
* Toyota claims the crown of world's biggest automaker after selling 8.97 million vehicles in 2008. GM's global sales have fallen to 8.35 million vehicles.
* Industry data shows 2008 US auto sales were down 18 percent. GM's sales fell 23 percent.

February 2009
* GM and Chrysler present restructuring plans to the US Treasury. GM asks for another 16.6 billion in loans and says it will cut 47,000 jobs worldwide this year. That will bring its global workforce down to 200,000 from 335,000 in 2005.
* GM asks Canada to boost its loans to six billion dollars.
* GM reports a 31 billion dollar loss for 2008, bringing its cumulative losses since 2005 to 86 billion dollars.
* GM washes its hands of Saab after the Swedish government refuses to bail out the troubled unit. Saab seeks legal restructuring protection to avoid bankruptcy.

March 2009
* GM's auditors express "substantial doubt" about its ability to stay afloat in the automaker's annual report.
* Longtime chief executive officer Rick Wagoner resigns at the request of the White House, which tells the automaker to come up with a better viability plan.

April 2009
* GM deepens its restructuring plan to cut more jobs, eliminate Pontiac and Saturn, shrink its dealer network by 42 percent by 2010.
* Attempts to swap 27 billion dollars in debt for a 10 percent stake in common shares.
* Idles 13 plants for "multiple weeks."
* Enters talks to sell a major stake in Opel.

May 2009
* Posts a first quarter loss of 5.9 billion dollars as quarterly production is slashed by 40 percent, or 903,000 units.
* Reaches cost-cutting deals with its US and Canadian unions.
* Receives another four billion in US government loans, bringing total to 19.4 billion.
* Creditors holding about 54 percent of General's Motors bonds approved a restructuring plan proposed by the US Treasury.

June 2009
* GM was due to file for bankruptcy in New York, hoping to reemerge a leaner but viable car company.

First Published: Jun 01, 2009 09:28 IST