AIG stock sale draws initial investor interest: report

NEW YORK Mon May 16, 2011 9:59am EDT

A man walks past the American International Group (AIG) building in New York's financial district, March 16, 2009. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

A man walks past the American International Group (AIG) building in New York's financial district, March 16, 2009.

Credit: Reuters/Brendan McDermid

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NEW YORK (Reuters) - Underwriters for the planned $9 billion stock sale by American International Group Inc (AIG.N) and the Treasury have indications of interest from investors for about half the offering, the Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday, citing people familiar with the matter.

Most of the indications of interest came in at an average price of about $30 a share -- above the U.S. Treasury's break-even price of $28.72 per share -- the Journal reported. AIG shares closed down 2.4 percent at $30.42 on Friday.

The interest was received before the launch of the formal "roadshow" for the sale, which began in Europe late last week, according to the report.

The roadshow will bring AIG's management this week to major cities in the United States, where most of its potential investors are located, the report said.

The early investor interest may suggest the government has a good chance of turning a profit on the first leg of the AIG sale. Treasury currently owns 92 percent of AIG, or 1.66 billion shares, which it plans to sell off over at least a year.

People familiar with the matter told Reuters last week that the Treasury would pull the sale if it cannot be done profitably.

Prior to the start of the roadshow, bankers conducted what is known as a "wall-crossed offering," where financial information about the company was provided to investors who signed confidentiality agreements, the Journal said.

These investors told bankers how many shares they would be willing to buy at what prices, subject to market conditions. The indications aren't binding commitments, the report said.

Representatives for AIG could not be immediately reached for comment outside regular business hours.

(Reporting by Soyoung Kim; Editing by Vinu Pilakkott)

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