General Motors Company plans to begin courting investors for its initial public offering immediately after the 2 November US midterm congressional elections.

GM's roadshow is set to begin on 3 November and will last two weeks, sources told Reuters and other news agencies. The IPO is expected to price on 17 November and debut on the 18th.

The sources cautioned that the plans were still being finalised and could change based on how US stock markets perform.

Waiting until after the 2 November elections would also allow bankers to tout GM's third-quarter financial results to investors although the automaker has cautioned that the second half of the year will show a slowdown from the first half, Reuters noted.

In August, GM filed paperwork for an IPO that could be worth as much as US$20bn, making it potentially one of the biggest IPOs of all time and the biggest new issue in the United States since Visa's March 2008 IPO of $19.7bn.

The final value of the IPO has not been set but one source said early plans for the IPO envisioned selling $12bn to $16bn in common stock and $3bn to $4bn in preferred stock that would convert to common stock under a mandatory provision.

The Obama administration has pledged to begin selling down its stake in GM as soon as practical and had said that process would begin in late 2010 at the time GM exited bankruptcy last year.

A final decision on how much of its stake in GM the US Treasury will sell in an IPO will be made in consultations led by treasury secretary Timothy Geithner and White House economic adviser Lawrence Summers after the terms of the deal are established, sources have said.

GM is waiting for its S-1 IPO filing to be approved by the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

Its shares will trade on both the New York Stock Exchange and the Toronto Stock Exchange since both the US and Canadian governments helped bail it out.

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