General Musings (GM)

“What’s good for the country is good for General Motors, and vice versa.”

So spoke Charles Wilson while he was President of GM in 1953. Ironically, it was on Wilson’s watch that GM agreed to generous health and pension benefits for its workers, those same benefits which are now such and economic drag on the company.

Now what would be good for GM is to offload its health and pension obligations onto the rest of the country. The big auto makers have energetically lobbied for nationalized health care.

Yesterday the New York Times opined that it would have been better if the government had provided pensions and health care for GM’s workers all along. Really?

Muni and state pensions are woefully underfunded, and taxpayers are on the hook. Would the country really be better off if Congress had been running enhanced industrial pensions? And will we be better off if the Federal Government takes charge of health care now?

GM shareholders have suffered tremendous losses because of management’s missteps. We can be glad that those mistakes are born by just one company, rather than all of us.


Douglas R. Tengdin, CFA
Chief Investment Officer
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By | 2014-09-03T20:07:47+00:00 July 11th, 2008|Global Market Update|0 Comments

About the Author:

Mr. Tengdin is the Chief Investment Officer at Charter Trust Company and author of “The Global Market Update”. The audio version of each post can be heard on radio stations throughout New England every weekday. Mr. Tengdin graduated from Dartmouth College, Magna Cum Laude. He received his Master of Arts from Trinity Divinity School, Magna Cum Laude and received his Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation in 1992. Mr. Tengdin has been managing investment portfolios for over 30 years, working for Bank of Boston, State Street Global Advisors, Citibank – Tunisia, and Banknorth Group. Throughout his career, Mr. Tengdin has emphasized helping clients manage their financial risks in difficult environments where they can profit from investing in diverse assets in diverse settings. –
Leave a comment if you have any questions—I read them all!
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