Capital Markets

Kerkorian Dumps 12 Million GM Shares

His investment company sold the shares to "offset certain capital gains realized by Tracinda in an unrelated transaction."
Stephen TaubDecember 21, 2005

Kirk Kerkorian apparently is losing his patience with General Motors Corp.

Certainly, the Las Vegas financier and activist investor is unhappy that GM’s stock dropped Tuesday to a 23-year low. So it’s little surprise, perhaps, that Kekorian announced that his investment company Tracinda Corp. had dumped 12 million shares in the world’s largest automaker, reducing his stake to 7.8 percent from 9.9 percent.

He remains GM’s third-largest shareholder, even as the company’s share price continued its decline on Wednesday.

In a Securities and Exchange Commission filing, Tracinda stated that it sold the shares to “offset certain capital gains realized by Tracinda in an unrelated transaction.”

Tracinda reported selling 5 million shares for $22.02 per share ($110,100,000) and 7 million shares for $20.21 per share ($141,470,000). According to USA Today, Kerkorian’s company had bought 22 million shares at an average of $26.33 per share and 18 million shares at an average of $31.00 per share. That would peg Kerkorian’s loss on the 12 million shares at somewhere between $65 million and $120 million.

In the filing, Tracinda added that it may buy or sell additional shares in the future. However, the company would not be able to buy any shares for 30 days due to the “wash sale” rule, which would negate the sale and therefore the tax benefits.

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