July 31, 2019 / 8:17 PM / 7 months ago

MetLife quarterly profit doubles on derivative gains

July 31 (Reuters) - U.S. insurer MetLife Inc on Wednesday reported quarterly profit that doubled from a year-ago, boosted by strong derivative gains.

MetLife recorded $724 million in derivative gains in the second quarter, reflecting changes in equity markets and interest rates. In the year-ago quarter, the company had a derivative loss of $59 million.

Premiums and fees dropped 29% to $12.02 billion, from a year earlier, while claims fell 33% to about $10 billion.

The insurer grew its business grew across U.S. and Latin America, but Asia and EMEA slipped.

Net investment income rose 5% to $4.69 billion, from a year earlier. Life insurers make money by investing premiums they receive for coverage, hoping to earn more than what they pay in claims.

Net income available to MetLife common shareholders rose to $1.68 billion, or $1.77 per share, in the second quarter ended June 30, from $845 million, or 83 cents per share, a year earlier.

On an adjusted basis, the company earned $1.38 per share.

Analysts on average had expected a quarterly profit of $1.34 per share, according to Refinitiv data. It was not immediately clear if the numbers were comparable.

This is MetLife’s first quarter under Chief Executive Officer Michel Khalaf.

Khalaf replaced Steven Kandarian who held the role for eight years and helped the company ride through intense regulatory oversight in the wake of the financial crisis. (Reporting by Bharath Manjesh in Bengaluru; Editing by Bernard Orr)

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