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GE launches biggest IPO since 2002

General Electric has sold 30 percent of life and mortgage insurer Genworth Financial for $3.53 billion in the biggest IPO since the July 2002 IPO of CIT Group, which raised $4.89 billion.

However GE did not receive its expected price the night before the IPO, pricing the Genworth shares at $19.50, 7.1 percent below the anticipated range of $21 to $23. Prices may have been affected by the fact that Genworth has a lower return on equity than many of its rivals such as MetLife, according to Elizabeth Malone, an insurance analyst at Advest Inc.

GE CEO Jeffrey Immelt says he plans to sell another 30 percent of Genworth next year and will eventually divest the entire unit.

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