Canadian insurer Sun Life underlying profit beats analyst estimates

TORONTO, May 5 (Reuters) - Canadian insurer Sun Life Financial beat analyst estimates for first-quarter underlying profit on Tuesday, driven in part by higher investing activity in Canada and the United States, although its bottom line was hit by market declines.

Sun Life reported underlying net income of C$770 million ($548.24 million), or C$1.31 per share, in the three months that ended on March 31, up from C$1.20 a year ago, the company said in a statement. Analysts had expected C$1.12.

Reported net income fell to C$391 million ($278.39 million), or 67 Canadian cents per share, from C$623 million ($443.57 million), or C$1.04, a year ago, due to market declines driven by the COVID-19 outbreak, Chief Executive Dean Connor said in the statement. ($1 = 1.4045 Canadian dollars) (Reporting by Nichola Saminather; Editing by Aurora Ellis)