UPDATE 1-Industrial Alliance raises dividend as profit climbs

Thu Feb 13, 2014 9:36am EST
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* Q4 net profit C$0.91 a share vs estimated C$0.89

* Company boosts dividend by 6 percent

* Full-year profit tops company forecast

TORONTO, Feb 13 (Reuters) - Industrial Alliance Insurance and Financial Services, Canada's fourth-largest life insurer, said on Thursday its quarterly profit rose a stronger-than-expected 26 percent, and the company boosted its dividend.

Net income attributed to common shareholders was C$91.1 million ($82.90 million), or 91 Canadian cents a share, for the fourth quarter. That compared with a year-earlier profit of C$72.1 million, or 76 Canadian cents a share.

Analysts had expected a profit of 89 Canadian cents a share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

The Quebec City-based company is raising its quarterly dividend by 6 percent to 26 Canadian cents a share, it said.

Premiums and deposits rose 5 percent year-over-year to C$1.8 billion in the quarter, while assets under management and administration surged 18 percent to C$98.7 billion.

For the year, the company earned C$384.5 million, or C$3.57 a share, which topped its earnings per share forecast of C$3 to C$3.40. For 2015, Industrial Alliance said it expects to earn between C$3.40 and C$3.80 a share.

During the quarter, the company acquired Toronto wealth manager Jovian capital for C$79 million in cash and stock.