May 3, 2012 | last updated June 1, 2012 2:18 pm

The Hartford's 1Q net plunges on hedging losses

The Hartford Financial Services Group said its profit plunged 81 percent in the first quarter despite improved revenue gains from its core operations.

The Hartford property-casualty and life insurer, which is selling off parts of its business, netted $96 million, or 18 cents a diluted share, down from $501 million, or 99 cents a share, in the year-ago period.

The earnings decline was largely due to losses on the insurer's hedging activities related to its international variable annuity business as a result of equity capital market levels and yen depreciation.

Not counting those, The Hartford said its core first-quarter profit rose 7 percent to $612 million from $574 million in the first quarter of 2011.

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