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PRIMERICA'S SECOND QUARTER NET INCOME UP 25 PERCENT TO $186.4 MILLION; EPS REACH $1.02 VS. $0.90

 NEW YORK, July 19 /PRNewswire/ -- Primerica Corporation (NYSE: PA) today reported net income of $186.4 million for the second quarter, up 25 percent from $149.6 million in the comparable 1992 period. Earnings per share were $1.02, up 13 percent from $0.90 in last year's quarter, on higher average common and equivalent shares outstanding.
 Sanford I. Weill, Primerica's chairman and chief executive officer, said, "We couldn't be more pleased with our company's performance: record results at Smith Barney; dramatically improved charge-offs at Commercial Credit as well as resumption of receivables growth; and an uptick in life insurance sales at Primerica Financial Services as well as signs of growth in the number of agents becoming licensed per month. These businesses are clearly progressing on track.
 "In addition," said Mr. Weill, "our completion by the end of July of the acquisition of Shearson's retail brokerage and asset management businesses is also right on track. First of all, as we announced in June, the financing for the transaction has been completed, which gives us a high comfort level for the long term, even though this quarter's earnings were reduced by about 4 cents as a result of our related equity and debt issuances. Equally important, with the addition of Bob Greenhill to the senior management group, and the talent he is attracting, we are already taking giant strides toward building the team that will make Smith Barney Shearson a uniquely powerful entity in the securities industry," he commented.
 "These are exciting times for Primerica," said Mr. Weill, "and we couldn't be more optimistic about our prospects. We're particularly pleased that we've been able in the recent past to take advantage of low interest rates, shifting our financing base to a more long-term position than we're traditionally used to -- about 70 percent. This is significant for the future, because we believe it will give us more flexibility in financing the growth of our businesses and can enhance the stability of our earnings going forward.
 "We are confident," Weill added, "that our company is both well- positioned and well-prepared for the opportunities and challenges ahead."
 Six Months 1993 and 1992
 For the first six months of 1993, operating earnings were $365.7 million ($179.3 million and $186.4 million in the first and second quarters, respectively). Net income was $376.7 million, consisting of operating earnings as well as first quarter items that included $24 million in reported net portfolio gains, including the company's share of gains reported by The Travelers; a $3.7 million gain from the sale of the remaining Fingerhut interest; and a $16.7 million charge related to a change in accounting for postretirement benefits (FAS No. 106).
 Operating earnings for the comparable 1992 six-month period were $302.9 million. Net income was $341.7 million, consisting of operating earnings as well as net gains of $66.9 million and a charge of $28.1 million related to the cumulative effect of a change in accounting for income taxes (FAS No. 109). The reported gains represented sales of a subsidiary and affiliates' securities.
 Investment Services
 Smith Barney earned a record $57.7 million in the quarter, up 36 percent from $42.4 million in the 1992 period (before purchase accounting adjustments of $3.2 and $3.3 million, respectively) and slightly ahead of the previous peak set in the first quarter of this year.
 The firm's 18 percent increase in total net revenues reflects improvement across-the-board. Robust volume in the securities markets contributed to a 24 percent increase in commission revenues versus the 1992 period, although this was down slightly from peak first quarter 1993 levels. Higher levels of corporate and municipal financings compared with last year produced an 18 percent rise in investment banking revenues, while principal trading revenues were up about 5 percent. A higher level of interest-earning assets, together with larger interest spreads, produced a 22 percent increase in net interest income, while an 18 percent increase in assets under management and a more profitable mix of assets contributed to a 25 percent rise in asset management fees.
 The Mutual Funds and Asset Management sector earned $8.l million in the quarter, up slightly from $7.9 million in the prior year period, with American Capital Management & Research and RCM Capital Management recording more than an 11 percent increase in assets under management. American Capital's mutual fund sales (at net asset value) increased 25 percent to $726.3 million, including a 57 percent gain in sales of equity and bond funds unrelated to the Common Sense(TM) Trust funds distributed by PFS. Higher sales volume was offset somewhat by the unit's higher volume-related marketing expenses.
 Third-party assets under management for Primerica overall topped $57 billion at June 30, 1993. It is significant to note that with the addition of Shearson, Primerica will become one of the country's leading asset managers, with over $110 billion in third-party assets under management.
 Consumer Finance Services
 Earnings from Consumer Finance reached $51.3 million, up 8 percent, reflecting continued significant declines in losses. Reserves as a percentage of net receivables were 2.78 percent, down slightly from 2.87 percent at the end of the 1993 first quarter, reflecting this lower loss rate. The charge-off rate dropped to 2.34 percent, down from 2.86 percent in the year-ago period and 2.61 percent in the 1993 first quarter. Delinquencies also continued to decline, reaching 2.19 percent, down from 2.55 percent in last year's quarter and 2.36 percent for the 1993 first quarter.
 Net receivables outstanding advanced to $5.76 billion, up from $5.63 billion at last year's quarter-end and $5.64 billion at March 31, 1993. Forty-five new branch offices have been opened thus far this year, bringing the total to 740 at quarter-end.
 Insurance Services
 Earnings from Primerica Financial Services of $49.5 million were essentially even with last year's quarter. Sales of individual term life insurance trended up from the experience in several recent quarters to $12.0 billion. (Last year's comparable figure of $12.7 billion reflected a one-time benefit from improvements in application processing efficiency.) Total life insurance in force reached $304.1 billion at June 30, 1993, up from the levels at the end of the past two quarters, reflecting on-going improvement in policy persistency.
 PFS continued to evidence strong growth in sales of other financial products. Mutual fund sales (at net asset value) were up 15 percent to $338.7 million in the quarter, as total assets under management in the Common Sense Trust family of funds reached $3.1 billion. Net receivables outstanding of loan products marketed by PFS continued to grow, reaching $621.0 million at quarter-end, up almost 40 percent from year-ago levels.
 Transport Life Insurance Company (formerly reported with Voyager as part of Specialty Life and Health) earned $6.5 million in the quarter, compared with $7.6 million in the prior year period, which included two employee benefit businesses which have since been sold to The Travelers. (Contributions to earnings from the Voyager group of companies, which were sold in May 1993, are reflected in the "Corporate and Other" segment.)
 The Gulf Insurance Group earned $8.0 million for the quarter, before The Travelers' 50 percent minority interest, up slightly from $7.8 million in the 1992 period. The continued growth of the higher margin specialty businesses, particularly financial services, contributed to an improvement in the company's combined ratio to 94.3 percent versus 95.9 percent in the quarter last year as well as a 7 percent increase in net premiums written.
 Corporate and Other
 The corporate and other segment accounted for $12.5 million in second quarter earnings, reflecting a $25.3 million contribution to earnings from Primerica's 27 percent investment in The Travelers. Corporate expenses were $12.8 million, down from the prior year quarter because of lower borrowing costs, and are net of $2.4 million in earnings from retained lines of business from Voyager. The 1992 corporate and other net expense of $9.6 million reflects corporate expenses of $14.3 million, including $2.5 million in earnings from Voyager businesses, and a $4.7 million contribution to earnings from the company's then 42 percent interest in Fingerhut.
 Primerica Corporation is a diversified financial services company engaged in investment services, insurance services and consumer finance services. As of June 30, 1993, Primerica had assets of approximately $26 billion and book value of approximately $26.15 per common share, up from $21.93 at the end of the year-ago period. Primerica's investment portfolio had net unrealized gains at the end of the second quarter of approximately $250 million.
 PRIMERICA CORPORATION
 Summary Of Earnings
 (In millions of dollars and shares, except per share amounts)
 Three months ended Six months ended
 June 30 June 30,
 1993 1992 1993 1992
 Revenues $1,283.6 $1,275.5 $2,585.9 $2,610.4
 Income from operations
 before income taxes
 and minority interests $ 296.6 $ 231.5 $ 624.4 $ 476.3
 Provision for income
 taxes on operations (106.2) (81.9) (222.5) (173.4)
 Income from operations
 before minority
 interests 190.4 149.6 401.9 302.9
 Minority interests,
 net of income taxes (4.0) -- (12.2) --
 Income from operations (A) 186.4 149.6 389.7 302.9
 Gains on sales of stock of
 subsidiary and affiliates,
 net of income taxes -- -- 3.7 66.9
 Income before cumulative
 effect of changes in
 accounting principle 186.4 149.6 393.4 369.8
 Cumulative effect of change
 in accounting for
 postretirement benefits
 other than pensions,
 net of tax -- -- (16.7) --
 Cumulative effect of
 change in accounting
 for income taxes -- -- -- (28.1)
 Net Income 186.4 149.6 376.7 341.7
 Preferred dividends (6.1) -- (12.2) --
 Income applicable to
 common stock $ 180.3 $ 149.6 $ 364.5 $ 341.7
 Earnings per share
 Before cumulative
 effect of changes
 in accounting
 principle $1.02 $ .90 $ 2.21 $ 2.22
 Cumulative effect of
 changes in accounting
 principle -- -- (.1O) (.17)
 Total $ 1.02 $ .90 $ 2.11 $ 2.05
 Total average common
 and equivalent shares 176.8 165.8 173.1 167.0
 (A) -- Income from operations for the six months ended June 30, 1993 includes previously reported first quarter net portfolio gains of $24.0 million, including the company's share of gains reported by Travelers' and excluding gains attributable to minority interest. Excluding these items income from operations was $365.7 million for the six months ended June 30, 1993 compared to $302.9 million in the prior year period.
 PRIMERICA CORPORATION
 Operating Earnings
 (In millions of dollars, except per share amounts)
 Six months ended Six months ended
 June 30, 1993 June 30, 1992
 Income from operations $ 389.7 $ 302.9
 Less previously reported first
 quarter net portfolio gains
 Insurance services
 (less Gulf minority
 interest) 14.0 --
 Equity in Travelers'
 realized gains 10.0 --
 Total 24.0 --
 Operating earnings $ 365.7 $ 302.9
 By segment:
 Investment services $ 125.1 $ 111.2
 Consumer finance services 99.6 92.2
 Insurance services
 (less Gulf minority
 interest in 1993) 117.3 124.5
 Corporate 23.7 (25.0)
 Operating earnings $ 365.7 $ 302.9
 -0- 7/19/93 R
 /CONTACT: Mary McDermott, 212-891-8870, or Barbara Yastine, 212-891-8872, both of Primerica/
 (PA)


CO: Primerica Corporation ST: New York IN: SU: ERN

TS -- NY013 -- 3051 07/19/93 12:36 EDT
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