The U.S. credit crisis spread like a disease that contaminated global markets and contributed to General Motors Corp.’s $9.6 billion fourth-quarter loss and full-year $30.9 billion shortfall in 2008, the auto maker says. Likening the dearth of available credit to a “contagion” that has the Obama Admin. scrambling to revive the nation’s banking industry, GM Chief Financial Officer Ray Young says the auto maker’s North American automotive operations were overwhelmed by a downward spiral that ...

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