Image: Bloomberg News
NEXT STOP? The federal subpoena of GM Financial is believed to be part of a wider investigation, though JPMorgan Chase, Ally and other lenders declined to say whether the government has contacted them. "Our understanding is that the request is focused on the subprime auto finance space in general," a GM Financial spokeswoman said.

FAQ: What Makes the DOJ's Subprime Auto Loan Probe Different

From the architects of multibillion-dollar mortgage settlements comes the latest scare for banks: a Department of Justice investigation of subprime auto lending. But the auto loan market has a different track record and players than mortgages, setting the stage for a unique fight among prosecutors, lenders and dealers.

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