This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

AIG's Benmosche Puts Wall Street's Foot in his Mouth

Stocks in this article: AIG CIT CS MET

Benmosche, who came to AIG after its bailout, has turned the company around, repaying the U.S. government and paying a 10 cent/share dividend this month. But the current price of nearly $50/share has to be set against a 1:20 reverse split, which happened a month before he took over.

He has done a good job delivering nearly $5 billion in net income this year spread across 1.48 billion shares. The market cap is back over $72 billion, and the AIG name has been placed back on key subsidiaries, like the former Chartis and the former SunAmerica.

But the worst was over before Benmosche joined. He retired as CEO of MetLife (MET) in 2006, and was just a board member at Credit Suisse (CS) when he was recruited by Jim Millstein, then chief restructuring officer at the U.S. Department of the Treasury. It's Millstein who turned AIG around, not Benmosche.

Since 2009 Benmosche has steered a steady course, which was the point of the Journal piece that began all this. But he's not Ted Turner, who transformed the Atlanta Braves from a laughingstock into an important baseball franchise. He's Fredi Gonzalez, the guy who gets to manage them now.

Benmosche now has the job former Braves manager Bobby Cox handled so well, that of seeing to a proper succession and heading into retirement himself. Benmosche is 69, he's a cancer survivor and he said last year he intends to retire by the end of next year.

The hope on the Street is his successor learns from his mistakes, for all our sakes. When someone hands you billions in assets and a clear field for managing them, the proper response is that of my friend and neighbor Edna House, who turns 100 in December and whose grandparents were slaves, for real:

Thank you, I'm blessed.

At the time of publication, the author owned 200 shares of AIG.

This article is commentary by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.

Dana Blankenhorn has been a business journalist since 1978, and a tech reporter since 1982. His specialty has been getting to the future ahead of the crowd, then leaving before success arrived. That meant covering the Internet in 1985, e-commerce in 1994, the Internet of Things in 2005, open source in 2005 and, since 2010, renewable energy. He has written for every medium from newspapers and magazines to Web sites, from books to blogs. He still seeks tomorrow from his Craftsman home in Atlanta.
2 of 2

Select the service that is right for you!

Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!


DOW 17,356.87 +288.00 1.69%
S&P 500 2,012.89 +40.15 2.04%
NASDAQ 4,644.3120 +96.4780 2.12%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs