May 23, 2001 10:32 PM

Billionaire Kirk Kerkorian, MGM Mirage's largest shareholder, sold 1.89 million shares of stock in the gaming company he controls, netting $57.7 million.

The sale was reported in a Monday filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission made through Kerkorian's Tracinda Corp.

The shares were sold on the open market at $30.50 each.

Kerkorian controls 91.2 million shares of MGM Mirage stock, or about 57.3 percent of the company.

No explanation was given for Monday's sale. MGM Mirage had no comment on the transaction.

In a similar transaction in February, Kerkorian sold 1.89 million shares of the gaming company and bought a block of preferred stock in MGM, the movie studio, which he also controls. The investment reportedly was made to help the studio expand its cable television operations.

MGM Mirage was up slightly on Wednesday from Tuesday's close, selling at $31.65 shortly before the markets closed. Trading was relatively heavy at 189,200 shares.