WASHINGTON – The remnants of Chrysler left behind in bankruptcy have repaid $1.9 billion of the $4 billion lent by the U.S. government to keep the automaker alive at the end of 2008, the U.S. Treasury said Monday.

The Obama administration said that with the payment, no more money was owed from “old” Chrysler or Chrysler Financial, which is winding down its business. The government still owns 9.9 percent of the “new” Chrysler formed after bankruptcy with Fiat, which has $7.1 billion in loans outstanding with the government.

Treasury said that of the $14.3 billion it had given Chrysler in total since late 2008, it had earned back $3.9 billion so far.

The payback Monday came from settlements between Chrysler Financial and what’s known as Chrysler Holding. Treasury said the payment was “significantly more” than it expected to receive for the loan, which had been written down as part of Chrysler’s bankruptcy.

Members of the Obama auto task force have maintained that the loans granted to Chrysler and General Motors by the Bush administration were likely to be written off, as the money was used to keep the companies in business until their bankruptcies in 2009.

Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne said earlier this month that Chrysler could outperform its targets of break-even earnings this year and offer shares to the public sooner than expected.


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