* First-qtr operating earnings $2.40/shr vs est $2.26
* Retirement services income jumps 60 percent
(Adds details, analysts' estimates, share movement)
May 7 Prudential Financial Inc, the
second-largest U.S. life insurer, reported a
better-than-expected quarterly profit, driven by strong demand
for its retirement services.
The adjusted operating income at the company's retirement
services business jumped 60 percent to $364 million.
Prudential's investment management business, which includes
retirement services, posted a 23 percent increase in adjusted
operating income to $945 million.
Income at the international insurance unit fell 5 percent to
Prudential's international business made up nearly half of
its 2013 adjusted operating profit at its financial services
businesses, which is also its biggest unit. Japan accounts for a
third of the company's international premiums.
Insurers, who use derivatives to hedge against fluctuations
in interest rates, are being squeezed as the U.S. Federal
Reserve's monthly bond buying program has kept interest rates
MetLife Inc, the largest U.S. life insurer, reported
a 36 percent rise in net income in April, helped by a derivative
gain linked to credit spreads, but operating earnings fell short
of market expectations as claims increased.
Prudential's operating earnings on an adjusted basis were
$2.40 per share. Analysts on average had expected earnings of
$2.26 per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
The net profit in the financial services businesses
attributable to the company was $1.22 billion, or $2.59 per
share, for the quarter ended March 31, compared to a loss of
$735 million, or $1.58 per share, a year earlier.
Prudential shares were up marginally after the bell. They
closed at $80.90 on the New Stock Exchange on Wednesday.
(Reporting by Neha Dimri in Bangalore; Editing by Saumyadeb