Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of battered insurer AIG (NYSE: AIG) jumped as much as 10% in intraday trading on heavier-than-average volume.

So what: The gains today owed to comments from AIG Chairman Steve Miller. He waved the rally flag for AIG, highlighting the trail that General Motors (NYSE: GM) and Citigroup (NYSE: C) have blazed in paying back government largesse. The noted turnaround ace also suggested that AIG's internal focus may soon shift from staying alive to targeting growth. Miller sees acquisitions as a key part of the company's expansion strategy.

Now what: In an interesting note form The Wall Street Journal today, Dave Kansas highlights the fact that AIG's shares remain a mere shadow of what they once were. Today, shares trade at a split-adjusted $52 and change. As recently as 2007, they were at a split-adjusted $1,100. Sans split, the shares would still be trading at less than $3 per share today.

Does that matter? I'd argue so. The higher price not only allows shares to meet the rules of more potential institutional holders, but the optics of the higher share price may help the company look properly recovered -- which will help it raise capital -- even if it isn't all the way there yet.

Want to keep up to date on AIG? Add it to your watchlist.

General Motors is a Motley Fool Inside Value choice. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.

Fool contributor Matt Koppenheffer does not own shares of any of the companies mentioned. You can check out what Matt is keeping an eye on by visiting his CAPS portfolio, or you can follow Matt on Twitter @KoppTheFool or on his RSS feed. The Fool's disclosure policy assures you no Wookiees were harmed in the making of this article.