AIG Shares Climb as Earnings Beat Expectations

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AIGToo-big-to-fail AIG (AIG), which received more than $180 billion in aid from the government during the financial crisis, reported a net loss of $2.7 billion for the second quarter of 2010, or $3.96 per share, but most of the loss was due to a $3.3 billion non-cash goodwill impairment charge included in discontinued operations.

The insurer reported a loss attributable to common shareholders of $538 million, compared to earnings of $311 million in the second quarter last year -- its first profit attributable to common shareholders since 2007. AIG earned $1.3 billion, or $1.99 per share on an adjusted basis, compared with $1.1 billion, or $1.71 the year before. Analysts had expected 99 cents per share, according to Thomson Reuters.

Revenue for the quarter was $19.99 billion, which compares to the estimate of $19.18 billion. Assets under management grew to $233.8 billion at June 30, 2010, a 10% increase compared to last year, primarily due to positive equity market returns in the later part of 2009 through the first quarter of 2010 and the rally in the bond markets.

AIG President and CEO Robert Benmosche said, "AIG's continuing insurance operating results remain solid, while the company continues to execute on its restructuring plans and prepares for separation from the U.S. government. Our overall strategy remains unchanged. We remain focused on monetizing AIA and ALICO as quickly as possible in order to repay taxpayers, at values reflecting the unique strengths of these highly attractive franchises."

During the financial crisis, AIG's bets on mortgage-backed securities and other toxic assets threatened to collapse the company. AIG has been selling off assets to strengthen its financial position and repay the government. Recently, its deal to sell its Asia-based life insurer, AIA Group, to Britain's Prudential PLC for $35.5 billion, fell apart.

AIG shares climbed some 5% in premarket trading.
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