Unum's Watgen Says 4th Quarter Was "Good Close To An Overall Solid Year"

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Unum, in a fourth quarter report, listed a rise in net income. The income, which includes certain non-operating items, was $233.9 million, or 85¢ per share, compared to a net loss of $369 million, or $1.26 per share, a year ago.

Unum President and CEO Tom Watjen describes the company’s fourth quarter 2012 financial results “a good close to an overall solid year.”

The company reported operating earnings per share growth of just over 5 percent. After-tax operating income for the quarter was $225 million, or 82 cents per share, compared to $228.

2 million, or 78 cents per share, in the fourth quarter of 2011.

Highlights for the quarter include:

  • Operating income for Unum US increased 2 percent to $212.2 million, with premium income rising by more than 3 percent.
  • Results for Unum UK, while still down over last year, showed improvement from the prior quarter. While most of the improvement came from the group disability line, the UK group life business – which has been the primary challenge – stabilized in the quarter.
  • Colonial Life reported operating income of $68.3 million, a more than 5 percent increase over the same quarter of 2011. Premium income increased by 4.4 percent.
  • Operating income in the Closed Block, which includes those business lines the company still services but doesn’t actively sell, increased over the third quarter through a slight improvement in risk experience.
  • Investment performance remains very strong.
  • Importantly, the company continues to maintain a very solid capital position. During the quarter it repurchased another $100 million of its stock, bringing repurchases to $500 million for the full year and more than $2 billion since 2007.

“There are many measures of performance,” Mr. Wajen said in a letter to employees. “But one is earnings per share, which we have now grown for seven consecutive years ... While there are still challenges ahead, we are well-positioned to confront these challenges and capitalize on the opportunities in 2013, and in doing so continue to create value for all of our stakeholders.”

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