It's a DEPRESSION, Stupid!
Chysler declares self bankrupt
America's third largest car manufacturer, Chrysler, has declared itself bankrupt after a handful of creditors withstood pressure from the Obama administration to forgive billions of dollars in debt, casting a cloud of uncertainty over tens of thousands of jobs at factories, suppliers and dealers.
After round-the-clock negotiations broke down, the 83-year-old Detroit carmaker said it was putting its future in the hands of the courts despite an 11th-hour deal with Italy's Fiat to pool technology in building new vehicles.
Both the White House and Chrysler expressed hope for a "surgical" bankruptcy lasting 30 to 60 days, clearing the company's liabilities and allowing it to emerge in healthy shape. But legal experts questioned whether this will be achievable and factory workers expressed fear for their jobs.
Speaking in the foyer of the White House, President Barack Obama made clear his anger towards the hold-outs: "While many stakeholders made sacrifices and worked constructively, I have to tell you that some did not. A group of hedge funds and investment funds decided to hold out for an unjustified taxpayer bailout."
He said it was "unacceptable" for a "small group of speculators" to endanger Chrysler's future. But he expressed optimism that Chrysler, which makes brands including Jeep and Dodge, can be restructured through a bankruptcy filing: "This is not a sign of weakness but rather one more step on a clearly chartered path towards Chrysler's revival."
Chrysler employs 54,000 people but tens of thousands more work for parts companies and in motor dealerships which depend on the firm for business. About 115,000 retired Chrysler workers depend on the company for healthcare and benefits.
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