Canadian Underwriter

P&C unit of E-L boosted in first-half 2002

August 7, 2002   by Canadian Underwriter

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Despite a drop in its portfolio investment segment, E-L Financial Corp. (TSE: ELF) saw net income rise for the first six months of 2002, to $32.4 million from $30.8 million for the same period last year. This results in income of $8.43 per share this year versus $8.01 per share last year for the period ending June 30.
The company’s p&c segment, which includes Dominion of Canada and Chieftain, performed better in the first half of this year, with revenue up to $364 million from $349 million last year. Net income rose to $14.14 million from $10.59 million in the first half of 2001. Excluding investment sales, income was $7.76 million in the first half of 2002, versus $4.58 million for the same period last year.
But the value of E-L’s stock portfolios suffered under difficult market conditions. “As of June 30, 2002, the market value of our stock portfolios has deteriorated so that the above surplus over carrying value ($40.9 million at 2001 yearend) has been reduced to $18.9 million,” states E-L chairman and president Henry Jackman in a release. “Since July 1, the stock market has continued to deteriorate. As of July 31, the market value of our insurance company stock portfolios is less than the carrying value by $28.8 million.”
For the company as a whole, while net income was up, income before taxes and policyholders’ and shareholders’ portions was down to $70.67 million for the first half of 2002 against $86.52 million at the same point last year. Net income for life insurance operations was down to $10.18 for the period versus $13.74 last year.
Nonetheless, Jackman notes, “in spite of the adverse markets, E-L Financial remains well capitalized to carry out its core business of providing insurance to Canadians.”

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