Insurer MetLife’s quarterly profit beats on rebound in investment income

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The MetLife building is seen in New York City, March 8, 2010. REUTERS / Shannon Stapleton

Nov. 3 (Reuters) – US insurer MetLife Inc (MET.N) beat Wall Street estimates for third quarter profit on Wednesday as strong investment gains helped cushion the blow from coronavirus claims .

The company reported adjusted earnings of $ 2.1 billion, or $ 2.39 per share, from $ 1.6 billion, or $ 1.73 per share, a year earlier. Analysts on average expected earnings of $ 1.74 per share, according to data from Refinitiv.

Global life insurers have benefited from a rebound in investment income, helping them offset higher payouts linked to the health crisis. Total variable investment income more than doubled to $ 1.41 billion from a year ago.

“MetLife had another very strong quarter. The exceptional variable investment income more than made up for the high COVID claims…” said Chief Executive Officer Michel Khalaf in a statement.

The New York-based insurer, which previously said the worst of the pandemic was behind it, reported an 18% increase in net investment income to $ 5.57 billion thanks to strong returns on capital investments. investment.

Rival Prudential Financial Inc (PRU.N) also reported strong quarterly adjusted earnings, driven by strong performances from the US insurer’s life insurance and annuity units. Read more

Adjusted profit from Metlife’s U.S. operations fell 1%, while Asia jumped 22%, helping to offset weakness in Latin America, where its business was impacted by increased claims related to the COVID-19.

Adjusted profit from its U.S. group operations was hit by $ 290 million from pandemic-related claims, a jump from $ 75 million in the previous quarter, due to a larger share of COVID-19 deaths under age 65.

It reported net derivative losses of $ 218 million in the quarter ended September 30. The insurer holds a portfolio of derivatives to hedge against market volatility.

These gains do not indicate the actual performance of the company, but reflect the effect of accounting rules, an issue that has also occurred in previous quarters.

Shares of Metlife rose 2.5% in extended trading.

Report by Noor Zainab Hussain in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur

Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.


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