Stewart Announces Record Results for Fourth Quarter and Year 2002
|February 14, 2003|
HOUSTON, /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Stewart Information Services Corporation (NYSE: STC - News) today reported results for the fourth quarter and year ended 2002. For the fourth quarter of 2002, Stewart's revenues, net earnings and earnings per share were the highest for any quarter in the history of the company. Revenues, net earnings and earnings per share for the year 2002 were also the highest year in the company's history.
Stewart earned $43.8 million, or $2.46 per diluted share, for the fourth quarter of 2002, compared to earnings of $17.2 million, or $.96 per diluted share, for the fourth quarter of 2001. Revenues increased 49 percent to $551.3 million.
Revenues for the year 2002 were $1.8 billion, a 40 percent increase from 2001. Net earnings for the year 2002 were $94.5 million, or $5.30 per diluted share, as compared to net earnings of $48.7 million, or $2.98 per diluted share, for 2001.
"For the second year in a row Stewart has been included on the prestigious Forbes Platinum 400 list of the best performing big companies in America," said Malcolm S. Morris, chairman of the board and co-chief executive officer. "Once again, we topped the entire insurance segment with the best five-year compound annual earnings per share growth rate. Stewart also posted the best increase in revenue in the past 12 months. We were pleased with the results of our reengineering of the company in 2000, helping us to deliver a record financial performance. We strive to inform prospective investors about Stewart's strong balance sheet, growing profitability and outstanding associates."
"SureClose®, Stewart's electronic transaction management platform facilitating communication to all parties of a real estate transaction, is now up and running at 123 sites across the country," said Stewart Morris, Jr., president and co-chief executive officer. "Parties to the transaction are able to track the closing process, receive electronic notification of scheduled and completed events and view documents prior to closing, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This Internet-based e-commerce site saves time, reduces expenses, streamlines the closing process and helps build solid long- term business relations with our customers."
"The number of orders was a new record for any fourth quarter in our history. The outlook for 2003 is for strong sales and construction levels at just slightly reduced levels from the prior year," added Stewart Morris, Jr. "The outlook for commercial real estate transaction volume should benefit from the terrorism insurance bill passed by Congress. Our National Title Services group continues to deliver a growing pipeline of pending commercial and relocation transactions. Growing global recognition of the value of and need for title insurance bodes well for ongoing international expansion, growth and profitability. With continued market share growth and execution of our strategies, we expect a good 2003."
Source: Stewart Information Services Corporation