CNO Financial sees jump in quarterly profit, revenue

CNO Financial Group Inc. saw a big increase in profit in the fourth quarter, but not enough to meet Wall Street expectations.

The Carmel-based insurance holding company on Tuesday reported profit of $234.2 million, or $1.34 per share, in the most recent period, compared with $137.3 million, or 73 cents per share, in the same quarter of 2015.

Earnings, adjusted for non-recurring gains, came to 35 cents per share, missing the estimate of 39 cents per share by four analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research.

CNO posted revenue of $1 billion in the period, up from $969.6 million in the year-ago period.

For the year, the company reported profit of $358.2 million, or $2.01 per share, compared with $270.7 million, or $1.39 per share, in 2015.

Revenue was reported as $3.99 billion, up from $3.81 billion the previous year.

"Our results again demonstrated the strength of our company, including solid earnings, growth in book value, capital and liquidity," CNO Financial CEO Ed Bonach said in a written statement. "We effectively executed on a number of key initiatives and grew the enterprise with meaningful increases in first year and total collected premiums while expanding our customer reach."

CNO shares closed at $19.13 each Tuesday, a climb of 19 percent in the last 12 months.

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