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General Motors Cuts Dividend, Adds Credit Lines to Conserve Cash Amid Coronavirus

By John Rosevear - Apr 27, 2020 at 10:31AM

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GM joins Ford in suspending its quarterly payouts to save cash.

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's corporate headquarters in Detroit, Michigan.

Image source: General Motors.

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."

Rival Ford Motor Company (F 2.86%) suspended its quarterly dividend and drew down its own credit lines on March 19. 

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.

John Rosevear owns shares of Ford and General Motors. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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General Motors Company Stock Quote
General Motors Company
$37.97 (3.67%) $1.34
Ford Motor Company Stock Quote
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