Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Writing: No Time for Writing

Writing: No Time for Writing

When I began this blog last June I anticipated that I would have something to say every other week or so as I observed interactions between Hank Greenberg and AIG. But less than two months later in a stunning move the US government seized control of AIG in an $85 billion deal intended to stave off bankruptcy. I tried to keep up with events, but everything snowballed. Within a few short weeks I felt like we were collectively Alice, falling down the rabbit hole and emerging into a totally different world.

AIG has been through four bailout plans since September 2008, and we still are not sure it’s going to work. The stock market has taken a nose dive to a 12-year low last week of 6,547. AIG, whose shares were worth more than $65 before Greenberg was forced out were priced at an unheard of 42 cents per share last week after posting a loss of $61.7 billion for the fourth quarter of 2007. Citibank shares dropped 95% in 12 months to a low $1 per share, and bounced only on news that the firm had been profitable for the first two months of the year. Today the Dow flirted with its 7,000-point ceiling – the first two-day climb since early February -- but ended up short at 6,930.

Wiley, the publisher of my book Fallen Giant: The Amazing Story of Hank Greenberg and the History of AIG, took note of these events and persuaded me to write new chapters for the booak that will recount the events from Hank Greenberg’s last day as AIG’s CEO to its very delicate current position. Wiley plans to release a paperback edition of Fallen Giant this summer, which will include these new chapters.

So I have been busy writing, but with no time to write this blog. Please tune in next week, when I expect to surface from my author-ly duties and return to my role as unofficial AIG watcher and commentator. In the meantime let’s hope the Dow continues its forward March.