by John D. Darer CLU ChFC CSSC RSP
A year after flared nostrilled politicians went batty over the folks from 70 Pine Street and Fox news hound Bill Hemmer's embellishment about the St. Regis sale conference, things seem to be looking up.
In a positive note affirming AIG's ratings, Moodys says that it believes that AIG can pay back the $120 billion it owes United States taxpayers.
14 months after the world seemed over Moodys says "the restructuring plan still relies heavily on government support, but if AIG's operations and global financial markets continue to stabilize, the company can likely generate enough value to repay the government". They also remarked that the 3rd quarter results "show continued stabilization of the core insurance operations despite challenging market conditions''
The ratings agency also praised former MetLife CEO' Robert Benmosche's strategy to rebuild some of the AIG's businesses previously on the short list to be sold, but also noted that a decline in realizable value could lead to downgrades.
While the recent track record of rating agencies suggests we should add the word "guarded" to this new sense of optimism to go along long with a "grain of salt", the recent intense scrutiny of such agencies suggests such agencies would be less inclined to give a favorable report unless a better job had been done on their homework.
Mum's the word from the structured settlement industry's AIG "grave dancer", Patrick Hindert, Executive Director of The Settlement Services Group.