March 2nd, 2009
09:47 AM ET
5 years ago

U.S. takes another crack at AIG rescue

AIG lost more than $60 billion in the fourth quarter of last year.
AIG lost more than $60 billion in the fourth quarter of last year.

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) - Insurance giant American International Group reported a stunning $62 billion quarterly loss on Monday, while government officials unveiled their latest efforts aimed at preventing the collapse of the firm.

Overwhelmed by ongoing deterioration in the credit markets and charges related to its restructuring, AIG's losses overwhelmed the firm during the fourth quarter. Its $61.7 billion loss amounted to $22.95 per share.

AIG's loss for the full year was even more dramatic - $99 billion. In 2007, the company reported a profit of $9.3 billion.

To keep the company from cratering and causing broader fallout across the financial system, the government said it would overhaul its bailout, which is aimed at helping the besieged firm unwind in an orderly way.

"Given the systemic risk AIG continues to pose and the fragility of markets today, the potential cost to the economy and the taxpayer of government inaction would be extremely high," Treasury said in its announcement.

One main goal of the revamped rescue plan - now totaling $162.5 billion - is to help boost AIG's financial position by, among other things, reducing the interest it pays the government on its loans.

Key components of the plan included the government's decision to commit another $30 billion to the firm in exchange for cumulative preferred stock. The payment, which will come from the second half of the $700 billion rescue package enacted last fall, will not be a one-time payment but AIG will able to draw down the funds as needed to help strengthen its capital base.

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Filed under: TARP • Treasury
soundoff (128 Responses)
  1. Axl in Iowa

    To: meh,
    You must either be; a politician, work for AIG, or you are BLIND, in love (w/ Obama), or maybe mentally disabled (ooops, can I say that?).

    You are absolutely right about Obama doing more in 30 days than W. did in 8 yrs. And we are by far much worse off for it. We are going to "pay" dearly for a very very very very loooonnnnggg time to come. Thank you uncle sam, I mean Barrack.

    March 2, 2009 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  2. Laura

    Yeah lets put Rush, Ann, Nancy, and Harry in a boat and and push then out to sea. Then lets see if the rest of us can figure out a solution to the problems with real ideas and real debate.

    March 2, 2009 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  3. survivor

    Look folks – since we really do anything constructive but worry – we must trust those in charge who do not want this country to fail – this is "major history happening here" pay attention and take notes,,,,

    March 2, 2009 10:12 pm at 10:12 pm |
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