Prudential Financial, Inc.’s (PRU - Free Report) fourth-quarter 2017 adjusted net income of $2.69 per share beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $2.60 by 3.46%. The bottom line also improved about 9.3% year over year.
Improved performances at Total U.S. Individual Solutions, Total Investment Management Division and Total International Insurance aided the above upside.
Behind the Headlines
Total revenues rose 13.6% year over year to $15.3 billion on the back of 19.5% growth in policy charges and fee income, 4.9% increase in policy charges and fee income, 5% higher net investment income and a 12.7% rise in asset management fees, commissions and other income. Also, the top line surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $12.9 billion.
Total benefits and expenses of nearly $13.7 billion increased 14.4% year over year in the quarter. This increase in expenses is mainly attributable to higher insurance and annuity benefits plus improved general and administrative expenses.
Adjusted net income of $10.58 per share beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $10.49. The bottom line also improved about 15.9% year over year.
Total revenues improved 4% year over year to $53.6 billion. The top line was almost in line with the Zacks Consensus Estimate.
Quarterly Segment Update
Total U.S. Individual Solutions reported adjusted operating income of $639 million, up 14.1% year over year. This upside was driven by higher contribution from Individual Annuities.
Total U.S. Workplace Solutions adjusted operating income was $313 million, down nearly 13.3% from the year-ago quarter, attributable to lower contribution from both Retirement and Group Insurance.
Total Investment Management Division adjusted operating income surged 36.6% to $306 million.
Total International Insurance reported adjusted operating income of $777 million, up 2.9% year over year.
Corporate and Other Operations reported adjusted operating loss of $463 million, wider than the loss of $441 million in the year-ago quarter.
Cash and cash equivalents of $14.5 billion at 2017-end increased from $14.1 billion at 2016-end.
As of Dec 31, 2017, Prudential Financial’s assets under management increased 10.3% to $1.4 trillion from $1.3 trillion as of Dec 31, 2016. Adjusted book value, a measure of the company’s net worth, was $88.28 per share as of Dec 31, 2017, up 11.8% year over year.
Operating return on average equity was 12.6%, flat year over year.
Debt balance totaled $18.6 billion as of Dec 31, 2017, down from $19.2 billion as of Dec 31, 2016.
Prudential Financial holds a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
Performance of Other Insurers
Among other firms from the insurance industry that have reported fourth-quarter earnings so far, the bottom line of The Progressive Corp. (PGR - Free Report) , The Travelers Companies, Inc. (TRV - Free Report) and RLI Corp. (RLI - Free Report) surpassed the respective Zacks Consensus Estimate.
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