CNO Financial beats third quarter analyst estimates

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CNO Financial Group Inc. on Tuesday reported third-quarter results that exceeded analyst expectations despite a 45 percent decline in profit.

The Carmel-based insurance holding company turned a profit of $18.6 million, or 11 cents per share, compared with $33.8 million, or 18 cents per share, in the same quarter of 2015.

Earnings, adjusted for non-recurring costs, came to 37 cents per share, topping the average estimate of 35 cents per share by three analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research.

The company posted revenue of $1.02 billion in the period, up from $904.5 million a year ago.

CNO collected $900 million in premiums in the latest quarter, up 2 percent from the same quarter of 2015. First-year collected premiums rose 7 percent, to $337.6 million, in the quarter.

Adjusted earnings rose from $79.8 million to $88.1 million at CNO's Bankers Life subsidiary but fell from $30.6 million to $25.2 million at Washington National.

CNO shares closed at $15.06 each Tuesday, a drop of 24 percent in the last 12 months. They were up 7.2 percent Wednesday morning, to $16.16 each.

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