timing of this pending divestiture cannot be overlooked.
[The letter] suggests that GM is taking a hard-line stance with both Delphi and the UAW, ... As such, we expect the negotiations to go down to the wire, but we still believe an out-of-court restructuring is most likely.
That said, we continue to favour GM over Ford due to the former's more favourable 2006 product cycle and its more aggressive restructuring approach.
The company's specificity on 2006 cost targets ... is likely to reassure the market, and heightens our belief that the company will see a meaningful earnings rebound in 2006.
We're expecting both of them to do well. The French carmakers are safer than the Germans, partly because they have limited U.S. exposure and partly thanks to a fairly robust home market.
Although such a move has been rumored for some time, the speed of Dana?s demise will further dampen sentiment toward the auto industry.
While none of these issues are enough to change our thesis on GM, they do raise our concerns on the company's internal accounting controls.
We see a $US2 billion cash injection as meaningful, even in light of GM's robust corporate liquidity. This sale was largely unanticipated by the market.
Although we are becoming more upbeat on the pace of restructuring, we worry about Ford North American production outlook, particularly in 2007.