WL Ross & Co. has reportedly ended negotiations with American International Group, New York, to buy its mortgage insurance division, United Guaranty, Greensboro, N.C., according to industry sources.
Wilbur Ross, chairman and chief executive of the company, was out of the country and could not be reached for comment. But he issued a statement to National Mortgage News in which he said, "We never confirmed we were in the deal."
However, this past fall reports began to surface that WLR&C was indeed negotiating with AIG and even had an exclusive with the company for several months. Sources familiar with the original parameters of the talks say WLR&C wanted to purchase all of UG's licenses, operating systems, and its entire 2009 book of business, leaving the "legacy" coverage with AIG. No price was ever mentioned.
According to the Quarterly Data Report, UG ranks fifth nationwide in terms of policies-in-force with $127 billion. AIG has received pledges of up to $180 billion in taxpayer aid since its near collapse 16 months ago. The U.S. Treasury owns about 80% of the company, which is still publicly traded after undergoing a reverse stock split last year.
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