8 years after nationalization, Irish bank back in market

MarketsAssociated Press

The Irish government has sold 25 percent of Allied Irish Banks' shares, eight years after nationalizing the firm amid the financial crisis.

The ministry of finance raised a total of 3 billion euros ($3.4 billion) Friday after selling the shares for 4.40 euros each. That values AIB as a whole at 12 billion euros.

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The ministry could sell another 400 million euros in shares, leaving it with a stake of at least 71 percent in AIB.

About 90 percent of the shares were sold to institutional investors like big banks while 10 percent was allocated to smaller investors.

Trading in the shares began Friday on the Dublin and London stock exchanges.

AIB received a taxpayer-funded bailout of 21 billion euros, one of the largest in Ireland, when it was nationalized.