AIG share sale hands US $8.7bn

The sale of shares in insurance giant American International Group (AIG) has raised $8.7bn (£5.3bn), taking the state-backed firm closer to independence after its 2008 bailout. A combined total of 300 shares of the company were sold by the US Treasury and AIG at $29 per unit. The government, which retains a majority stake in the firm, needed to sell shares at about $28.7 per unit in order to recover a $47.5bn investment. The sale represents the government’s first step toward exiting its ownership of the firm, which received more than $182bn in aid during the financial crisis.