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GMAC Loses $3.9B in Second Quarter

Updated 11:55 a.m. ET

GMAC Inc., said Tuesday it posted a wider second-quarter loss of $3.9 billion as it shifted from being primarily an auto and mortgage loan company to an online, retail bank.

In the year-ago period, the company posted a loss of $2.48 billion.

Revenue during the quarter fell 28 percent to $1.27 billion from $1.76 billion.

The bulk of the latest quarterly loss stems from a $1.6 billion charge related to company's mortgage business. GMAC also incurred a $1.2 billion tax charge on its conversion from a partnership, or LLC, to a privately held corporation. The company remains a preferred lender to General Motors Co.

Excluding those charges, GMAC said its second-quarter loss was about $400 million.

"GMAC's results in the quarter were dramatically affected by a series of strategic actions that produced a short-term negative impact to financial performance but are expected to lead to longer-term benefits," said GMAC CEO Alvaro G. de Molina in a statement. "This is about gaining funding and operational flexibility, expanding on our strengths, and shedding legacy and non-strategic assets, allowing us to focus on the core automotive and mortgage origination and servicing businesses."

Results were weighed down by ResCap, GMAC's mortgage division, which posted a loss of $841.1 million in the quarter. That was narrower than the $1.86 billion loss suffered in the second quarter of 2008. The ResCap results included an $817 million gain on debt extinguishment. Excluding that gain, ResCap lost $1.66 billion in the latest quarter, compared with a loss of $2.5 billion a year ago.

Chief Financial Officer Robert Hull said on a conference call with analysts that it would retain its ResCap unit, despite the losses.

"We'll continue to support ResCap as long it supports interests of our stakeholders," he said. "I think we're handling it."

Midway through the quarter, GMAC added Chrysler Group as a preferred lender. However, GMAC's automotive unit lost $727 million in the quarter, compared with a loss of $717 million in the second quarter of 2008. Higher unemployment rates in the U.S. pushed the number of delinquent contracts to 3.4 percent in the quarter, compared with 2.4 percent in the same quarter of 2008.

GM's bankruptcy protection filing did not have a significant affect on GMAC's credit losses which still rose to 2.2 percent, compared with 1.4 percent a year ago, on general economic weakness in North America and Europe.

In May, the Treasury Department announced a new $7.5 billion injection for GMAC - still short of the $11.5 billion the government's "stress test" last month showed the company needs to stay afloat if the economy worsens. Of the injection, $4 billion was earmarked for new loans to Chrysler dealers and customers. The remaining $3.5 billion was to go toward boosting GMAC's capital base. The Treasury now has a 35 percent stake in GMAC.

Hull said GMAC is in contact with government regulators regarding the funds it needs to raise to meet the stress test requirements.

In addition to $7.5 billion injection, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. took the rare step of allowing the junk-rated company to gain access to its debt guarantee program. GMAC will be allowed to issue as much as $7.4 billion in FDIC-backed debt. The FDIC guarantees the debt that GMAC would issue in case the company defaults on payment.

The Federal Reserve also waived rules to give GMAC's new bank, called Ally Bank, more leeway to make loans to GM customers.

Ally Bank had assets of $42.5 billion at the end of the quarter, up from $36.4 billion at the end of the first quarter, the only comparable quarter. Ally received $25.4 billion in deposits in the quarter, including $14.5 billion in retail deposits as the company heavily marketed its new bank status.

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