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Delphi bankruptcy risks getting worse

Delphi headquarters in Troy, Michigan

TEXT OF STORY

Scott Jagow: Auto-parts maker Delphi's in a New York bankruptcy court today. The company hopes to get out of bankruptcy by the end of the year. It could face all kinds of problems if it doesn't. Alisa Roth reports.


Alisa Roth: With the credit markets in a real mess, now's not the best time to try to emerge from bankruptcy.

Gregg Lemos-Stein: Loans are getting considerably more expensive, and exit financing as well.

Standard and Poor's analyst Gregg Lemos-Stein says that's especially true for companies like Delphi.

Lemos-Stein: Of course, you also have in the automotive sector weakening economic signals. For 2008, the outlook looks shakier than in past years.

If Delphi can't manage to pull out of bankruptcy by year's end, it'll face all kinds of penalties. Including a massive tax bill related to pension costs, and legal fees that keep adding up.

Lemos-Stein says Delphi will emerge eventually. What's less clear is what the company's final restructuring plan will look like.

It's not just Delphi's workers and creditors who'll be watching today's hearing. Three other auto-parts makers are also trying to exit bankruptcy. So Delphi's outcome could be a bellwether of things to come.

In New York, I'm Alisa Roth for Marketplace.

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