De Molina Leaves GMAC CEO Post - TheStreet



) -- Alvaro de Molina abruptly resigned as CEO of

GMAC Financial Services

after Monday's closing bell, fueling speculation he could be moving to the front of the line of candidates to assume the top job at

Bank of America

(BAC) - Get Report


"I came to GMAC thinking that it was a short-term assignment working through a liquidity crisis," said de Molina in a press release. "That crisis lasted two years. With the help of government support and the incredible efforts of our team, we are now on stable footing, positioned for profitability in 2010 and beyond."

He added later: "It is a good time for me to move on to my next chapter."

Alvaro de Molina

GMAC Financial's board named Michael Carpenter, a director who has served on the company's board since May, to replace de Molina as CEO. Carpenter has previously served as CEO of


(C) - Get Report

Global Corporate & Investment Bank unit, Salomon Smith Barney, Travelers Life & Annuity and Kidder Peabody.

As a result of de Molina's resignation, GMAC Financial's board has asked the Treasury Department to postpone a decision on making a follow-on investment in the company until Carpenter and the rest of the management team can evaluate the situation. Additionally, Carpenter has resigned from his position of the board of

CIT Group

(CITG.PK) in order to concentrate on GMAC Financial.

De Molina has been of the more

prominent outsider names

to come up as potential successors to outgoing BofA CEO Ken Lewis, who is leaving at the end of the year. De Molina left BofA in December 2006, resigning from the CFO post, and has recruited a number of BofA executives to leave the company since that time.

BofA said last week it's looking to

name the successor

for Lewis by Thanksgiving, and de Molina has reportedly been a favorite choice for a number of shareholders, such as Finger Interests, which owns more than one million BofA common shares.

"We still favor Jim Hance or Al de Molina," Jonathan Finger told


in an e-mail Friday afternoon. "Both have more experience at BofA than

Brian Moynihan (BofA's current head of consumer banking) or

Greg Curl (the company's current chief risk officer) - 17 years each."

BofA shares closed Monday at $15.87, down 11 cents.

Written by Michael Baron in New York.