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How Big Was the GM Bankruptcy?

We had a little newsroom debate yesterday ... how large is the General Motors bankruptcy compared with other bankruptcies?

Reuters was saying it was the third largest. But Associated Press was saying the fourth largest. And our own research, based on numbers from Bankruptcydata.com, put GM in the four spot as well. (The differences lie in how you count Washington Mutual's assets).

So we went with the fourth thinking, as you can see in our slideshow.

Of course, then I open the Wall Street Journal this morning and see them blaring that GM is the second largest industrial bankruptcy.

Such differences happen fairly frequently in business journalism. All depends on what you're counting and how bad you to portray the event.