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Hartford Financial Services Group said on Thursday that CEO and chairman Ramani Ayer, under pressure from shareholders as the 199-year-old insurer struggles with record losses, would retire by the end of the year.

The Hartford, Conn.-based life and property insurer, set to receive up to $3.4 billion in taxpayer funds, is looking outside for a successor to Ayer, the company said.

The search for a new CEO could be complicated by the insurer’s plans to take federal funding, given restrictions on pay and spending tied to taking taxpayer aid.

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