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PRIMERICA'S SECOND QUARTER 1992 EPS UP 30 PERCENT TO $1.36 VS. $1.05

 PRIMERICA'S SECOND QUARTER 1992 EPS UP 30 PERCENT TO $1.36 VS. $1.05
 NEW YORK, July 14 /PRNewswire/ -- Primerica Corporation (NYSE: PA) today announced that earnings per share rose 30 percent to $1.36 for the quarter ended June 30, 1992, vs. $1.05 for the 1991 second quarter. Net income increased to $150.5 million, up 28 percent from $117.3 million in the prior year's period, while revenues were $1.28 billion vs. $1.29 billion, excluding Fingerhut revenues.
 Sanford I. Weill, Primerica's chairman and chief executive officer, said: "We are very gratified by Primerica's continued superior performance across the board for the quarter. Despite the persistent sluggishness of the economy, we continue to grow our base of recurring, predictable earnings, to generate expanding free cash flow and to record consistently high returns on equity in virtually all our businesses. At the same time, our capital base has been steadily improving and we are continuing to buy back our stock -- 3.0 million shares since Jan. 1. We believe, therefore, that Primerica is in an excellent position to capitalize on future improvements in the economy.
 "Smith Barney's performance continues to evidence the firm's consistent ability to sustain good returns relative to the market environment. We are also encouraged by further improvement in delinquencies in the Consumer Finance sector from prior quarter levels, which could harbinger a sustainable, gradual improvement in loss experience as the economy recovers. In addition, although the higher insurance sales at PFS vs. the first quarter resulted in part from more efficient back-office processing, we consider it a positive sign that sales remained above the $11 billion level for the fourth consecutive quarter."
 Also during the period, Weill noted, Primerica earned significant rating upgrades from A.M. Best for two insurance subsidiaries. Massachusetts Indemnity and Life Insurance Co. (MILICO), just renamed Primerica Life Insurance Co., was upgraded to a rating of A- ("Excellent") from B+ ("Very Good"). "This double upgrade reflected the rating service's recognition of MILICO's financial strength, the operating progress achieved through the company's strategic restructuring and its conservative balance sheet," said Weill. In addition, Gulf, a property/casualty insurer, has been upgraded to A+ ("Superior") in recognition of the company's strong financial position. "Our focus on disciplined underwriting, the growth of the specialty business and the strength of our investment portfolio are reflected in Gulf's financial results and have clearly been recognized by A.M. Best," said Weill.
 Investment Services
 Smith Barney posted a 13 percent increase in earnings to $42.4 million, vs. $37.4 million in the comparable 1991 quarter, before purchase accounting adjustments in both periods of $3.3 million. Performance was strong across the board, although, as expected throughout the industry, less robust than in the all-time record first quarter of 1992.
 Particularly good results were reported in the investment banking sector, where revenues increased 15 percent vs. the 1991 period. Total gross production rose 4 percent for the 1992 quarter to $258 million, with the retail network producing a 3 percent increase to $162 million and the institutional sector generating a 5 percent rise to $96 million. Asset management fees rose almost 19 percent to $20.8 million, largely as a result of an increase in assets under management and control as well as the introduction throughout the year of several new funds.
 The mutual funds and asset management segment contributed $7.9 million to earnings vs. $7.0 million in the previous year's period, excluding the $4.5 million contributed in 1991 by Margaretten, Primerica's mortgage banking subsidiary, which was sold in a public offering in January 1992. These results reflect higher earnings from RCM Capital Management, as assets under management increased to $22.2 billion, and improvement in the performance of American Capital Management & Research, the mutual fund subsidiary. Primerica's total assets under management reached $50.7 billion at June 30, 1992, up from $50.2 billion at March 31, 1992, and $45.2 billion at the end of the prior year quarter.
 Consumer Finance Services
 Earnings from consumer finance remained strong, up 10 percent to $47.5 million from $43.1 million in last year's quarter, primarily as a result of continued control of expenses and a higher receivables base. As of June 30, 1992, receivables outstanding stood at $5.757 billion vs. $5.655 billion at the end of the 1991 period, and up slightly from first quarter 1992 levels, reflecting low consumer loan demand. Two measures of the loan portfolio's credit quality showed a positive trend, as both 60-plus day delinquencies and charge-offs declined from first quarter 1992 levels, to 2.55 percent from 2.72 percent, and to 2.86 percent from 2.88 percent, respectively. Reserves as a percentage of receivables remained at the 2.91 percent level.
 Earnings from Primerica's remaining 42 percent interest in Fingerhut Companies, previously reported within this sector, are now reflected in the corporate and other segment.
 Insurance Services
 Earnings from Primerica Financial Services for the quarter were $45.5 million, not including a contribution of $3.9 million from its New York State underwriter, National Benefit Life Insurance Company (NBL), whose results were previously reported in the specialty life and health segment. This compares with earnings of $44.7 million from PFS and $.2 million for NBL in the 1991 quarter.
 Sales of new life insurance were $12.7 billion in face amount compared with $14.1 billion for the 1991 second quarter, but somewhat above the levels reported in the previous three quarters in part because of improvements in application processing efficiency. Total face amount of life insurance in force was $305.7 billion at June 30, 1992, vs. $306.2 billion at the end of the 1992 first quarter.
 Effective July 1, MILICO was renamed Primerica Life Insurance Company, while First American National Securities (FANS), the registered broker/dealer for the sale of mutual funds by Primerica Financial Services licensed sales representatives, was renamed PFS Investments. Both names were selected in order to foster brand name recognition and better identify both companies with Primerica Financial Services, and its parent company, Primerica.
 Also on July 1, the company began introducing three new term insurance products -- 10-, 15-, and 20-year policies. This product portfolio provides the sales force with a broader range of consumer driven, competitively-priced products which are also designed to offer better sales incentives for agents.
 Other products sold through Primerica Financial Services include mutual funds, sales of which continued to trend upward significantly to $294 million at net asset value, a 32 percent increase from the 1991 second quarter levels of $223 million. $.M.A.R.T. and S.A.F.E. loans, marketed by PFS agents and reflected in consumer finance services assets, were also up, reaching $445.8 million in net outstandings at June 30, 1992, compared to $301.4 million at the end of last year's quarter and $429.6 million at March 31, 1992. Assets under management in PFS's proprietary Common Sense Trust family of mutual funds reached $2.4 billion at the end of the quarter, up 27 percent from $1.9 billion at the end of the 1991 period.
 Specialty life and health operations earned $10.1 million in the quarter, up 68 percent from $6.0 million in the 1991 period. These results principally reflect increases in accident and health lines as well as the elimination during 1991 of unprofitable lines of business. The figures do not include a $10 million restructuring provision in the 1991 period for costs associated with the restructure and exit of certain product lines.
 Earnings from Gulf Insurance's property and casualty business were $7.9 million, up 32 percent from $6.0 million in last year's quarter. This increase was largely attributable to higher writings of the more profitable specialty lines and a continued planned decrease in writings of less profitable lines in the regional business. Gulf's combined ratio dropped to 95.9 percent, a substantial improvement from the 100.6 percent ratio experienced in the comparable 1991 period.
 Corporate and Other
 Corporate and other expenses continued to trend downward, reaching $11.4 million compared to $28.3 million in the prior year period. The company's consistent reductions in net expenses reflect lower interest rates as well as lower debt levels. Figures for the 1992 and 1991 quarters include income from Primerica's remaining interest in Fingerhut. The 1991 corporate and other total is before a gain of $25.6 million from the public offering of 4.2 million shares of Fingerhut stock and an after-tax charge of $15.6 million related to certain real estate lease commitments.
 Primerica Corporation is a diversified financial services company principally engaged in investment banking and securities brokerage, mutual funds and asset management, consumer lending, and life, credit, accident & health, and property & casualty insurance. As of June 30, 1992, Primerica had assets of approximately $23 billion and book value of approximately $32.90 per share.
 PRIMERICA CORPORATION
 Summary of Earnings
 (In millions of dollars and shares, except per share amounts)
 Periods ended Three Months Six Months
 June 30 1992 1991 1992 1991
 Operating revenues (A) $1,275.5 $1,287.5 $2,581.2 $2,544.2
 Income from operations
 before income taxes
 and minority interests 231.5 153.8 476.3 323.9
 Provision for income
 taxes on operations (81.0) (57.7) (171.9) (119.4)
 Income from operations
 before minority interests 150.5 96.1 304.4 204.5
 Minority interests,
 net of income taxes -- (4.4) -- (6.9)
 Income from operations (B) 150.5 91.7 304.4 197.6
 Gains on sales of stock of
 subsidiaries and affiliates,
 net of income taxes -- 25.6 66.9 25.6
 Net income $ 150.5 $ 117.3 $ 371.3 $ 223.2
 Earnings per share (C) $ 1.36 $ 1.05 $ 3.34 $ 1.99
 Total average common
 and equivalent shares 110.5 113.0 111.4 113.2
 (A) -- Operating revenues in 1992 and 1991 exclude the effect of gains on sales of stock of subsidiaries and affiliates. Operating revenues in 1991 exclude Fingerhut's revenues of $307.2 million, and $621.0 million for the three months and six months ended June 30, 1991.
 (B) -- Included in income from operations in both the three months and six months ended June 30, 1991, are after-tax charges of $10.0 million related to restructuring of the specialty life and health operations and $15.6 million related to real estate lease commitments.
 (C) -- Earnings per share includes $.23 in the three months and six months ended June 30, 1991, and $.60 in the six months ended June 30, 1992, relating to gains on sales of stock of subsidiaries and affiliates.
 -0- 7/14/92
 /CONTACT: Mary McDermott, 212-891-8870, or Avery Hunt, 212-891-8871, both of Primerica/
 (PA) CO: Primerica Corporation ST: New York IN: FIN SU: ERN


GK -- NY020 -- 9014 07/14/92 10:20 EDT
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