In 2006 when GM was faced with $10.5 billion in losses, they decided to sell their credit business, GMAC, so they could use the money to pay down some of its restructuring costs, shut assembly plants and buy out employees. Even though this deal helped GM restructure their company, the bailout in 2009 showed that GM had not learned from their mistakes.

GM announced Thursday, that they would be getting back into the credit business in a recent plan to buy AmeriCredit Corp., in an all cash transaction valued at about $3.5 billion. GM executives have said for months that they were missing sales opportunities due to lack of credit for lease deals and financing for sub prime buyers and that this is an opportunity to bring more people into the showrooms and help them with finance.

The two companies have had a financial relationship for years. AmeriCredit, which already works with about 4,000 GM dealers, now gets about one-third of its business from financing new and used GM vehicles. Overall, the auto financing company has about 800,000 customers and $9 billion worth of auto loans on its books.

The automaker says that its partner, Ally Financial — formerly known as GMAC Financial Services Inc., will continue to finance GM’s dealer inventory and make loans to buyers with good credit. GM says it is not considering a purchase of Ally’s auto financing unit in which GM sold controlling interest in 2006. The company eventually had to be bailed out by the U.S. government because of problems with its home mortgage loan unit.

Many feel that GM’s purchase of AmeriCredit is another multinational corporation finding loopholes to exploit, and that the credit practices that collapsed the sub prime housing market was actually started in the auto finance credit business. The recent Financial Overhaul bill that was just passed by Congress will not be of any help either, since automakers were exempt from it.

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