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Canadian life insurer, Sun Life Financial Inc. (SLF - Analyst Report) announced third-quarter 2013 net operating earnings of $438.5 million (C$422 million), declining 3.6% year over year.                           

Sun Life Financial’s reported net income came in at $336.6 million (C$324 million), down 23% year over year.

The improved numbers were driven by strong sales, and continued product and pricing improvements.

Adjusted revenues of Sun Life Financial were $5.61 billion (C$5.4 billion), up 20.5% year over year. The increase was primarily due to higher net premium revenue, fee income in Mutual Fund segment and higher investment income.

Total benefits and expenses of Sun Life Financial were $3.8 billion (C$3.7 billion), down 11.8% year over year.

While wealth sales was up 25%, insurance sales increased 6% year over year. 

Assets under management was $608.8 billion (C$590.5 billion) up 8.6% from $560.6 billion (C$532.9 billion) as of Dec 31, 2012.

Segment Results

During the quarter, SLF Canada reported operating income of $219.0 million (C$215 million), up 2.0% year over year. The upside was driven by strong performance in its Individual Insurance and Investment line of business. 

SLF U.S.recorded operating income of $101 million during the reported quarter up 28% year over year. The segment continues to grow its employee benefit group insurance as well as life and investment product business.

MFS Investment Management reported operating net income of $120.5 million (C$116), up 52.0% year over year.

SLF Asia reported operating income was $18.7 million (C$18 million), down 46% year over year.  

Financial Update

Sun Life Financial reported operating return on equity of 12.6%, compared with 11.8% in the year-ago quarter.

Sun Life Assurance's MCCSR ratio was 216% as of Sep 30, 2013, compared with 209% as of Dec 31, 2012.

Highlights of the Quarter

During the quarter, Sun Life Financial completed the sale of its U.S. Annuity Business to Delaware Life Holdings, LLC. With this transaction the company has shed much of its equity market and interest rate exposure. 

Other Stocks

Other players Eastern Insurance Holdings, Inc. , Kemper Corporation (KMPR - Snapshot Report) with Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) and Assurant Inc. (AIZ - Analyst Report) with Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) all reported better-than-expected third quarter earnings.

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