A.I.G reported a $61.66 billion loss for the fourth quarter, the biggest quarterly loss in U.S. history.
Meanwhile, the Treasury Department and Federal Reserve announced the overhaul of the government's bailout of the firm in a joint statement early Monday in an effort to ease the government's terms for supported the firm. In addition to providing up to $30 billion in additional capital on an as-needed basis to AIG in return for preferred stock, the Treasury said it would convert its existing $40 billion of preferred shares into new preferred shares that more closely resemble common stock. Under the new terms, the Treasury is to get a 77.9% equity interest via preferred stock on Wednesday.
The new deal, the government's fourth for AIG, represents a nearly complete reversal from the one first laid out in mid-September. The government is relaxing loan terms by wiping out interest in hopes of preserving AIG's value over a longer period.
The company continues to face significant challenges, driven by the rapid deterioration in certain financial markets…. The additional resources will help stabilize the company, and in doing so help to stabilize the financial system, the Treasury and Federal Reserve said in a statement.
The steps by the Treasury will be coupled with changes to the Fed's existing $60 billion resolving credit facility for AIG. The Fed and the Federal Reserve Bank of New York plan to take up to a $26 billion preferred interest in two AIG life insurance subsidiaries -- American Life Insurance Co. and American International Assurance Co. -- as well as make $8.5 billion in new loans to benefit the domestic life insurance subsidiaries of AIG. In addition, the interest rate on the existing credit facility will be modified to reduce the existing floor.
AIG will package life-insurance assets into bonds to give to the government, reducing its federal debt by the value of the bonds. The government can either hold them or sell them to investors.
The company is now able to receive $70 billion, or 10% of the TARP. Citigroup has received $50 billion under the TARP and Bank of America $45 billion. Each firm remains eligable for additional funds.
British bank HSBC on Monday unveiled plans to curtail its foray into U.S. consumer lending by pulling back from key businesses.
The bank said it will scale back its consumer lending operations in the U.S., shutting down its HSBC Finance Corp. and Beneficial brands, causing a loss of 6,100 jobs. But the company said its retail bank branch business in the U.S. will not be affected by this decision.
With the benefit of hindsight, the group wishes that it hadn't made this investment, HSBC Chief Executive Michael Geoghegan said during a conference call this morning. But we are where we are, and we believe the majority of shareholders wish us to collect these assets … and then move on.
He said more pain was still to come from the U.S. consumer-finance unit before the assets are run-down. We do believe that over the next two years, provisioning will remain elevated, if unemployment continues to rise, he said.
HSBC announced the moves as it released 2008 results that were hurt by a dismal fourth quarter. HSBC posted full-year net profit of $5.73 billion, down 70% from $19.13 billion in 2007.
The bank said Monday it plans to raise £12.5 billion ($17.9 billion) by issuing new shares to existing shareholders via a so-called rights issue. The share issue will take place at 254 pence a share, a 47.5% discount to the closing price Friday, with every shareholder able to subscribe to five new shares for every 12 shares they already own.
HSBC reported a loss of $15.5 billion for North America, hurt by a goodwill impairment charge of $10.6 billion in its North American Personal Financial Services business.