Insurer AIG sells consumer credit affiliate

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    Ailing US insurance giant AIG announced on Wednesday the sale of 80 percent of its stake in consumer credit provider American General Finance to Fortress Investment Group, a hedge fundmanager.

    No details were provided on the terms of the deal, which will leave AIG in control of the remaining 20 percent as it struggles to pay back a massive taxpayer buyout. AGF has assets of approximately 20 billion dollars and liabilities of approximately18 billion dollars, including 17 billion dollars of debt.

    The firm provides loans, retail financing and other credit related products in the United States, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, and Britain. American International Group, once the world’s largest insurer, has been selling assets since its rescue from collapse by the government during the 2008 financial crisis. It is today nearly 80 percent owned by the state.

    The authorities pumped more than 180 billion dollars into the company as it crumbled under the weight of bad bets on mortgage-backed securities and other toxic assets. AIG shares fell by more than four percent on Wednesday despite the news of the sale.

    New York, Aug 11, 2010 (AFP)