American International Group's shares fell 2.1 percent on Monday a day after the U.S. Treasury Department said it will sell $18 billion of the insurance company's shares.
The Treasury's sale will lower the government's stake in the bailed-out insurer to around 20 percent from its current 53 percent. Investors had widely expected the Treasury to cash out of its AIG shares, but many investors had expected the sales to happen over more time.
The sale, Treasury's biggest sell-down of its AIG stake so far, comes as President Barack Obama campaigns for a second term and has been forced to defend his support of decisions to use taxpayer money to prop up companies during the financial crisis.
The administration has been unwinding its position in the politically unpopular financial crisis programs ahead of the election, amid heavy Republican campaign pressure over the value of the bailouts, with more than 300 small banks having yet to repay taxpayers.
AIG's shares fell 70 cents to $33.29.
(Reporting By Dan Wilchins and Ben Berkowitz; Editing by Andrea Ricci)