AIG soars on hopes of quick turnaround

December 15, 2010, 12:52 AM UTC

AIG surged 9% after the chairman of the government-owned insurer said it could be back in private hands within a “year or two.”

AIG (AIG) rose $4 to a 52-week high above $52 after Steve Miller, who is chairman of the bailed-out New York company, told Bloomberg Television both AIG and Treasury are “anxious to complete that job as quickly as possible.”

A big rally

Treasury, the Federal Reserve and AIG agreed last week to a restructuring of the government’s loans to AIG. Public lending commitments to AIG once ranged as high as $182 billion, but the government has been saying the revamped deal puts taxpayers on course for reaping a profit on the federal bailout of the company.

To that end, Miller said he takes heart in the big stock sales pulled off recently by two other high-profile, bailed-out companies, Citigroup (C) and General Motors (GM).

“Those are good precedents that give increased confidence that we will be able to get the same thing done with Treasury selling their shares into the public market,” Miller said.