GM posts $4 billion second half loss


General Motors posted a significant loss in the second half of 2009 but company officials believe the automaker can become profitable this year.

The Detroit automaker says it lost $4.3 billion between July 10, when it emerged from bankruptcy, and December 31.

The company says more than $2.5 billion of that figure can be attributed to a settlement loss due to the UAW retiree health care plan.

GM Chief Financial Officer Chris Liddell says he doesn't want to overpromise, but he's optimistic.

"There's nothing I've seen in the first quarter ..which you'll see in a month's time that changes my opinion--that there's a good chance we'll be profitable this year," he says.

GM will release its first quarter earnings statement in mid-May. Liddell says the automaker plans to finish repaying more than $8 billion in U.S. and Canadian government loans by June.