That's right. In a move little noticed outside of the business pages, General Motors last week bought more than $400 million in shares of PSA Peugeot Citroen - a 7 percent stake in the company.
Because U.S. taxpayers still own roughly one-quarter of GM, they now own a piece of Peugeot.
Peugeot can undoubtedly use the cash. Last year, Peugeot's auto making division lost $123 million. And on March 1 - just a day after the deal with GM was announced - Moody's downgraded Peugeot's credit rating to junk status with a negative outlook, citing "severe deterioration" of its finances
In other words, General Motors essentially just dumped more than $400 million of taxpayer assets on junk bonds.