The Treasury Department has sold nearly 18 million warrants it holds in Atlanta-based SunTrust Banks Inc. The sale helped the government recoup taxpayer money from the $700 billion Wall Street bailout.
The department said Friday that it will receive $30.1 million from the sale. A warrant gives the purchaser the right to buy SunTrust stock at a specified price.
SunTrust said Friday that it purchased 4 million of the warrants. Treasury didn't identify the other buyers.
Sun Trust received $4.85 billion from the federal government in the fall of 2008, at the height of the financial crisis. The bank repaid the money in March. The sale of the warrants gives the Treasury an additional return on its investment.
Congress authorized $700 billion to rescue banks, auto companies and troubled insurer AIG. But the government has distributed only $413 billion from the bailout fund.
So far, $315 billion has been repaid. The program remains nearly $100 billion in the red, mostly because of money that hasn't been repaid by AIG and the automakers.
About $245 billion went to banks, most of which has been paid back. When dividends and interest are included, the banks have returned $255 billion to the Treasury.