General Motors (GM 3.67%) said on Monday that it has suspended its quarterly dividend and stock-repurchase programs to conserve cash amid the coronavirus pandemic.
GM announced that it has bolstered its balance sheet further, extending a three-year, $3.6 billion revolving line of credit to April of 2022. The move follows an agreement to extend another credit line, a $2 billion 364-day agreement for GM's financial-services subsidiary, to April of 2021.
GM last paid its $0.38 quarterly dividend on March 5. The company spent about $2.2 billion on dividend payments in 2019.
"We continue to enhance our liquidity to help navigate the uncertainties in the global market created by this pandemic," said CFO Dhivya Suryadevara in a statement. "Fortifying our cash position and strengthening our balance sheet will position the company to create value for all our stakeholders through this cycle."
GM has taken several steps to reduce its cash burn rate since idling its North American factories and drawing down $16 billion from its credit lines in March. GM's salaried employees are deferring a portion of their paychecks (20% or more) until next year, and senior executives and directors have taken larger pay cuts.
The company is hoping to restart its U.S. factories soon, but no definitive date has been announced. GM's discussions with government officials, suppliers, and the United Auto Workers labor union are ongoing.