No. 4: General Motors
Company value at time of bankruptcy: $91 billion
Iconic Detroit automaker General Motors (NYSE:GM) was running out of gas before the financial crisis, and in early 2009 relied on a government bailout to keep the factories from shutting down for good. The total price tag of the 2009 bankruptcy was a cool $91 billion, based on the company’s value at the time. (And in case you’re wondering, taxpayers will lose about $14 billion on the “investment” in this struggling company). GM emerged from bankruptcy in July of 2010 and soon after held the largest IPO in history, worth $20 billion, in November 2010. There was a cost, however, as the Pontiac and Saturn brands — along with the death of Mr. Goodwrench — were results of bankruptcy and restructuring at General Motors.