Assurant Falls Most in S&P 500 as Floods, Phones Hurt Profit

  • Profit was hurt by Louisiana storms, slump at Solutions unit
  • Credit Suisse’s Nadel lowers estimate for 2017 earnings

Assurant Inc., the insurer that sells coverage protecting mobile phones and homes, posted the biggest decline in the S&P 500 Index after third-quarter profit slumped.

The insurer dropped $7.65, or 8.4 percent, to $83.65 at 4:02 p.m. in New York trading, the biggest fall since February. That narrowed the company’s advance for the year to 3.9 percent.

Net operating income was $54 million to $66 million, compared with $104 million in last year’s third quarter, the New York-based company said late Tuesday in a regulatory filing with preliminary results. Assurant said catastrophes, including flooding in Louisiana, hurt the property unit. Results were worse than expected at the Solutions division, which backs phones and also issued extended-service contracts and credit insurance.

“Management had expected growth in mobile, combined with expense savings, would help offset the decline in legacy portions of the segment," John Nadel, an analyst at Credit Suisse Group AG, said in a note. “The updated 2016 outlook suggest growth in mobile will fall shy of expectations."

He lowered his estimate for 2017 operating earnings to $6.50 a share from $6.77. Assurant plans to release final third-quarter results on Oct. 25.

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