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Auto finance company to repay U.S. with $5.2B in stock

DETROIT - Auto financing company Ally Financial will pay the U.S. government more than $5.2 billion to buy back preferred stock that the government got for bailing out Ally in 2009.

The move is a likely step by Ally toward exiting government ownership. Taxpayers also own 74 percent of Ally's common stock. All the shares were granted in exchange for a $17.2 billion bailout of the lender.

Ally also will pay dividends plus $725 million for the government to give up rights to convert the preferred stock to common shares.

With the move, Ally will have repaid roughly $12 billion. That means the government is still about $5.2 billion in the hole on the Ally deal.

Ally also says it will sell nearly 167,000 common shares to investors for $1 billion.

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