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Fed Assistance for Big Three Could Come Tomorrow

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The Bush White House could give automakers access to the financial industry $700 billion bailout monies as early as tomorrow, according to Automotive News. A Treasury Department official only confirmed that the Big Three and the Treasury were continuing to review information concerning assistance. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson wants to be sure that Detroit automakers really are viable and sustainable companies before giving them access to any money.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi feels strongly that the Bush administration will give access to federal money, seeing stabilization of the U.S. auto industry as preferable to pushing companies into bankruptcy. Quoted in Automotive News, she says, "I think all the signals coming from the White House are that they know that bankruptcy is not an option and that (stabilization) funds are the only recourse that they have."

GM and Chrysler are the two companies with the greatest need for cash, claiming they will collapse unless they receive immediate and significant infusions of capital. Ford is faring slightly better, saying only that it would need access to a government line of credit if market conditions are worse than expected for 2009.--Colin Mathews

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