Canadian Underwriter

Investment losses drag down E-L Financial

February 27, 2004   by Canadian Underwriter

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Financial services provider E-L Financial Corp. Ltd. (TSX: ELF), parent company of The Dominion of Canada General Insurance Co., posted higher operating income for 2003, largely on the back of growth in its general insurance business. However, net income dropped as a result of hits to the company’s investment income.
Overall net income for the company, including its portfolio investments, life insurance and general insurance operations, was $46.9 million, or $12.20 per share, down slightly from $47.6 million, or $12.40 per share, in 2002.
The drop comes despite a rise in net operating income, almost doubling in 2003 to $42.9 million, or $11.17 per share, up from $23.3 million, or $6.08 per share the year prior.
The biggest blow came from a $13.4 million loss on sale of investments, also stemming from the general insurance operation, compared to a gain of $18.2 million in 2002.
General insurance operations posted increased revenues last year, up to $962.9 million from $770.3 million in 2002. And while net income before investments was up to $33.6 million in 2003 from $14.0 million the year prior, a loss on sale of investments of $13.3 million, compared to a gain of $8.2 million in 2002, caused overall net income to drop. The drop was slight however, with net income for 2003 at $20.3 million, down from $22.2 million in 2002.
At year end, E-L had overall assets of $7.3 billion, up from $6.4 billion at the end of 2002.

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