Editor's note: A previous version of this story had an incorrect figure for GM's March 31 cash reserves.
DETROIT -- General Motors posted a $6 billion net loss and burned through $10.2 billion in the first quarter as it relied on a federal bailout to ride out a decline in global sales that overwhelmed cost-cutting efforts.
GM had $11.6 billion in cash reserves on March 31, down from $14.2 billion at the end of the fourth quarter. The cash burn in the latest quarter was partially offset by $13.4 billion in government loans keeping the biggest U.S. automaker solvent.
The company's seventh-straight quarterly loss compared with a $3.3 billion net loss a year earlier and added to $82 billion in cumulative annual losses since 2004. GMs global revenue declined 47 percent to $22.4 billion as the company cut production by about 900,000 vehicles and worked to trim inventories in the United States and Europe.
Fritz Hendersons first earnings report as CEO showed the pressure on GM with less than a month remaining to win deals to slash debt and operating costs with the UAW and bondholders to avoid bankruptcy.
Results were awful, as expected, said Kip Penniman of KDP Investment Advisors in a note for clients. GMs cash burn was even worse than we were expecting.
GM CFO Ray Young said GM will need an additional $2.6 billion in federal loans in May. For the rest of the year, GM would likely need $9 billion more, he added.
Young said there was evidence consumers were scared away from GM cars and trucks because of concern that the automaker is headed for bankruptcy.
"You could not offset the revenue implosion that we experienced here," Young told reporters today.
He said GM still hoped to complete a debt restructuring out of court but was ready for bankruptcy if necessary. He said GM was pressing ahead with contingency plans for a quick bankruptcy process, drawing on the experience of Chrysler LLC, which filed for court protection last week.
The first-quarter operating loss was $5.9 billion, compared with an adjusted net loss of $381 million in the first quarter last year.
GM has received an additional $2 billion in U.S. loans since the end of the first quarter. The company said it would explain its cash position in more detail in coming days when it files its 10-Q report to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
GMs revenue decline in the first quarter was driven by sharp cutbacks in production. That was especially evident in North America, where revenue fell 50 percent to $12.3 billion. GM cut North American production 58 percent and managed to reduce vehicle inventory by 108,000 units to 767,000.
GM reported a net loss of $3.2 billion in North America. On an operating basis, the loss was $2.8 billion, helped by rising residual values on its vehicles.
The net loss for Europe, where production fell 46 percent, was $2.0 billion. With the lower output, revenue slid 46 percent to $5.3 billion.
In its Asia Pacific region, GM reported a first-quarter loss of $21 million compared with a $310 million profit a year earlier. Declining sales in most markets overshadowed a 17 percent volume increase in China. Revenue in the region fell 54 percent to $2.4 billion.
The automaker eked out a $16 million profit in its Latin America, Africa and Middle East region, down from $500 million a year earlier.
GM will decide at the end of this month whether an offer to extinguish $24 billion in bond debt in exchange for new shares had garnered enough support for the company to avoid a Chapter 11 filing.
GMs global market share fell to 11.2 percent in the first quarter, down from 12.4 percent a year earlier.
The first quarter was marked by GMs failure to win backing for a turnaround plan that the U.S. auto task force concluded was too slow-moving to succeed. The Obama administration ousted Rick Wagoner as CEO at the end of the quarter. He was replaced by Henderson.
The losses are expected to mount in the current quarter when GM shuts down U.S. manufacturing plants for up to nine weeks in an effort to reduce inventory and lessen its exposure to bankrupt former subsidiary Delphi Corp.
GM is negotiating with Delphis bankruptcy lenders and the U.S. government to try to find a way to allow the parts supplier to emerge from bankruptcy after more than three-and-a-half years.
We would like to have a resolution of Delphi as soon as possible, Young said.
GM is facing a government-imposed June 1 deadline to reach agreements to overhaul its operations and cut more than $40 billion in debt. It has taken $15.4 billion in emergency loans from the U.S. Treasury Department and expects that to rise to $18 billion by the end of the month.
Young said GM was back in talks with union representatives and ready to negotiate around the clock to reach a settlement.
The UAW faces pressure to accept GM stock in exchange for about $10 billion the union is owed for a trust fund for retiree health care. That would give the union a 39 percent stake in the restructured company.
Under the plan GM detailed last month, the government would own a majority stake, effectively nationalizing the 100-year-old Detroit-based automaker.
The company also said the Treasury had not yet agreed to convert half of the loans it has extended to GM into stock in a restructured company, as the automaker has proposed.
GM shares were down 5 cents at $1.61 at 3:59 p.m. on the New York Stock Exchange. The companys pending plan to issue new shares to pay off creditors would dilute the value of the share to less than 2 cents.
Jamie LaReau and Reuters contributed to this report.