General Dynamics Corp., the world's biggest privately owned weapons maker, which produces everything from nuclear subs to missiles, last week told its trouble (TIME, Jan. 5) in statistics. Its annual report gave its 1961 loss as $143,200,000.
largest ever sustained by a U.S. corporation in a single year.
It stemmed largely from the company's ill-fated invasion of the commercial jet transport market with its Convair 880 and 990a venture that has involved G.D. in the biggest single product loss ($470 million) in U.S. corporate history.
(By contrast, the Edsel fiasco cost Ford Motor Co. about $200 million.) With the 1961 write-offs, the...