Paulson Scales Back AIG Stake While Sitting on Insurer's Board

Paulson & Co. cut its stake again in American International Group Inc. even though the hedge fund firm’s billionaire leader sits on the insurer’s board of directors.

The holding dropped to 4.8 million shares as of Dec. 31 from about 9 million on Sept. 30 and more than 11 million on March 31, according to a regulatory filing Tuesday.

John Paulson and a representative from Carl Icahn’s firm were elected to AIG’s board in May after pushing Chief Executive Officer Peter Hancock to shrink the company and boost returns for shareholders. AIG has failed to match the returns of the S&P 500 Financials Index since last year’s annual meeting, and the company on Tuesday reported a fourth-quarter net loss of $3.04 billion.

Paulson’s firm declined to comment. His hedge funds have endured redemptions in recent periods after failing to duplicate the success of the financial crisis when the investor prospered by betting on declines in the value of subprime mortgages. Jon Diat, a spokesman for New York-based AIG, also declined to comment.