YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections


Two Title Insurers Post Record Profits

April 26, 2002|From Times Staff and Wire Reports

The ever-hotter real estate market helped the nation's two largest title insurance carriers boost first-quarter earnings and revenue to record levels for any January-to-March period, usually the slowest time in the real estate market.

The largest, Fidelity National Financial Inc. in Irvine, more than doubled its net income to $101million, or $1.14 a share, from last year's first-quarter profit of $45million, or 52 cents. Revenue rose 41% to $1.1 billion.

First American Corp. in Santa Ana reported net income of $44.1million, or 57 cents a share, more than double its profit of $20.6million, or 30 cents, earned in the same period last year. Revenue grew 30% to $1billion.

"This year has started out as a year driven by robust resale volumes with interest rates" still at low levels, said Fidelity's president, Patrick F. Stone.

In other Southern California company earnings:

International Rectifier Corp., an El Segundo-based microchip maker and power management company, posted a 75% decline in fiscal third-quarter profit, but said orders jumped as it sold more proprietary technology products.

Net income fell to $12.2 million, or 19 cents a share, from $47.9million, or 73 cents a diluted share, in the year-ago quarter. The company's results were in line with forecasts of a 19-cent profit among analysts polled by Thomson Financial/First Call.

Revenue dropped to $178.6 million from $276.0 million.

* Corinthian Colleges Inc. said fiscal third-quarter profit rose 55%. The Santa Ana-based operator of more than 60 colleges expects full-year results will beat analysts' estimates.

Net income rose to $11.1 million, or 50 cents a share, in the period ended March 31, from $7.2 million, or 33 cents, a year earlier. Revenue rose 35% to $88.3 million from $65.2 million.

* Unilab Corp., a Tarzana-based medical testing firm, posted first-quarter net income of $8.7 million, or 25 cents a share, versus $3.2million, or 12 cents a share, in the year-ago period.

Revenue rose to $103.9million from $95.3 million.

* OSI Systems Inc., a Hawthorne-based seller of optoelectronic-based components and systems, posted fiscal third-quarter net income of $2.3 million, or 17 cents a share, versus $329,000, or 4 cents, a year ago. Revenue rose to $32.1 million, versus $29.4 million.

* Guitar Center Inc., a Westlake Village-based retailer, posted net income of $3.4 million, or 15 cents a share, down from $5 million, or 22 cents, in the year-ago quarter. Revenue rose to $251.5 million, versus $213.2 million a year ago.

* Apria Healthcare Group Inc., a Lake Forest-based operator of home health-care services and products, posted net income of $23million, or 41 cents a share, for the first quarter, an increase from $17.1 million, or 31 cents a share, in the same period a year ago. Quarterly sales rose 11% to $301.3million.

Apria also said it has hired Lawrence A. Mastrovich as chief operating officer. Mastrovich left the company a year ago to become president and chief operating officer of TechRx Inc.

* New Century Financial Corp., an Irvine-based specialty mortgage banking company, reported that first-quarter profit climbed to $30.9million, or $1.21 a share, contrasted with a net loss of $2.6million, or 17 cents, a year ago. Revenue more than doubled to $112.3million from $48 million.

* RemedyTemp Inc., an Aliso Viejo-based staffing company, said second-quarter net income fell 93% to $191,000, or 2 cents a share, for its fiscal second quarter ended March 31.

It earned $2.7 million, or 30 cents, for the same quarter a year ago. Revenue declined 18% to $106.6 million.

* Sicor Inc., an Irvine-based pharmaceutical company, said first-quarter profit doubled to $22.5million, or 19 cents a share, from $11.9 million, or 11 cents, in the same period a year ago. Revenue increased 30% to $109.6million.

Los Angeles Times Articles