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New York Life Reports 2009 Financial Results

  • Surplus and AVR increased more than $2 billion, or 17%, to over $15 billion in 2009.
  • Operating revenue grew more than $400 million, or 3% over 2008, to $14.38 billion.
  • Operating earnings were $1.22 billion in 2009, nearly matching 2008's record result.
  • Total insurance sales surpassed $2.6 billion, an increase of 11% over 2008, with U.S. Life Insurance leading the way with a 14% increase over 2008.
  • Total investment sales rose to $32.85 billion, an increase of 22% over 2008.
  • Assets Under Management reached a new record of over $286 billion, a 15% increase.

NEW YORK, April 14, 2010 – New York Life Insurance Company, America's largest mutual life insurance company*, announces new records in 2009 for sales of insurance and investment products and reached a new high in operating revenue. The company also added more than $2 billion to surplus for the year, expanding the policyholders' cushion of safety to more than $15 billion, an all-time high.

2009 Financial Highlights

Ted Mathas, chairman, president and chief executive officer, said, "The company's operations performed extremely well in 2009, with strong demand for life insurance and lifetime income products, as well as fixed annuities and mutual funds. Most notably, our U.S. Life Insurance operations, the core of the New York Life franchise for 165 years, achieved a double-digit sales increase at a time when industry wide sales declined by double digits. This is a testament to our agents and employees, who have worked tirelessly to inform our policyholders and the public about the company's superior financial strength and security, crucial qualities in any environment but especially important now. Consumers have clearly come to appreciate that it matters who provides their family's protection. They want an insurer with a track record of providing long-term guarantees. Of the 1,000 life insurers in the United States, New York Life is one of only three with the highest possible ratings from all four of the major rating agencies. Tied closely to our financial strength is our mutual ownership structure, which aligns our interests and resonates very well with consumers. Our single focus on policyholders and managing for the long-term has enabled us to pay a cash dividend to policyholders for 156 consecutive years. In 2009 we showed that we can differentiate our company by staying true to our fundamental strategies, including our focus on life insurance, on career agents, on remaining a mutual company, and of course, maintaining superior financial strength."

Strong Surplus Position

Surplus, the cushion of safety for policyholders, increased 17% in 2009 to over $15 billion, a new record. The majority of the increase was fueled by organic growth, as well as the issuance of $1 billion in surplus notes in 2009. Mr. Mathas said, "The combination of organic growth and the surplus notes resulted in New York Life's highest-ever reported surplus and asset valuation reserve, slightly above where it was before the financial crisis hit. We maintain a healthy surplus - a kind of rainy day fund - to give our company and its policyholders a capital cushion in economic rainstorms, pandemics and other disasters. Our approach has been more than validated in the last two years."

Strong Operating Earnings

Operating earnings, the company's measure to track profitability from ongoing operations, was a strong $1.22 billion in 2009, marking the fourth consecutive year that operating earnings has exceeded one billion dollars. The 2009 result represented a slight decline from the record $1.28 billion in 2008. "The company's operating earnings have remained basically flat throughout the financial crisis, a reflection of how we manage the company for long-term strength. A byproduct of this is a less volatile earnings profile, providing stability of earnings so our policyholders can count on us year after year," Mr. Mathas said. In fact, the two-year median decline in operating earnings for New York Life's peer competitors was about 45%, compared with 4% for New York Life.**

Records Set for Sales, Operating Revenue and Assets Under Management

Insurance sales increased 11% in 2009, to $2.66 billion, propelled by strong sales of life insurance through agents (up 16%) and lifetime income annuities in the U.S. (up 32%). New York Life is the largest seller of life insurance and lifetime income annuities in the United States, according to an industry source***. Insurance sales through the Agency channel set a new record in 2009, exceeding $805 million for the first time.**** In addition, sales of life insurance through AARP increased 15% in 2009. Investment sales increased 22% to $32.85 billion in 2009, driven by exceptional growth in sales of institutional and retail mutual funds, and bundled 401(k) plans. The company also experienced very strong sales of fixed deferred annuities through its many bank and broker-dealer partners. New York Life's operating revenue, the company's measure to track revenues from ongoing operations, increased 3% to over $14.38 billion, a new company milestone driven by sales of life insurance, lifetime income annuities and investment annuities. Assets Under Management increased more than $37 billion in 2009, to a new high of over $286 billion, an increase of 15%.

Review of Businesses

U.S. Insurance Operations

The company's U.S. Life Insurance and Agency Operations includes the manufacture and sale of all life insurance products in the United States and management of the company's primary U.S. distribution channel, 11,800 licensed agents. U.S. Life Insurance is the company's largest revenue generator, selling a full array of products including individual, bank and corporate owned life insurance. Key highlights of 2009 were:

  • New York Life led the industry in life insurance market share in 2009.
  • New York Life continued its leadership in the Million Dollar Round Table, the industry's most prestigious professional organization for agents, for the 55th consecutive year. The company had 2,013 agents achieve this recognition in 2009, about one-quarter of New York Life's active field force in the United States. New York Life also led the industry in the number of women agents qualifying for MDRT in 2009
  • New York Life recruited a record number of financial representatives in 2009, with 3,618 appointments in the United States. Since 2005 New York Life has increased its agent force by 15%, at a time when the number of agents industry-wide is declining.
  • New York Life is America's leading direct marketer of life insurance through an endorsed program with AARP geared to its membership. New York Life is also the largest underwriter of professional association insurance programs in the United States, covering members of more than 500 associations across the country.
  • New York Life is also the largest underwriter of professional association insurance programs in the United States, covering members of more than 500 associations across the country.

Retirement Income Security

Retirement Income Security (RIS) is a leader in providing solutions to the retirement income challenge, both in the accumulation and income phases of retirement. RIS offers income annuities, investment annuities, and long-term care insurance. RIS also distributes the company's family of MainStay mutual funds. In 2009 RIS achieved new sales records in investment annuities and income annuities and new sales records for both gross and net sales of MainStay mutual funds. The long-term care operation gained market share in a soft market for the product. It currently ranks as the sixth largest supplier of long term care insurance in the U.S.*****

New York Life Investments ranks among the largest asset management firms in the United States. With more than $256 billion in assets under management, New York Life Investments provides investment management services to institutional and retail clients, offers retirement plans for corporations, multi-employer trusts and individuals and delivers guaranteed products to both the qualified and non-qualified markets.

Although equity and fixed income markets experienced great volatility, New York Life Investments' investment expertise and acumen in risk management skillfully managed the $146 billion of the company's investment assets. In 2009, New York Life Investments achieved company records in both gross and net sales.

New York Life International

New York Life International, with operations in Asia and Latin America including Mexico, India, China, Hong Kong, South Korea, Taiwan and Thailand, expanded rapidly in a number of the world's most attractive emerging markets. Key highlights of 2009 were:

  • Continued strong revenue in spite of the effects of the global recession, with particularly solid earnings performances in the company's operations in Mexico, Thailand, and Hong Kong.
  • Overall, International's career agent sales force continues to grow, with more than 82,000 agents registered in the seven markets.

New York Life Ratings Are Exceptionally Strong

New York Life has the highest possible ratings for financial strength/claims paying ability from the four major rating agencies: Moody's Investors Service (Aaa), Standard & Poor's (AAA), Fitch (AAA) and A.M. Best (A++).

New York Life Insurance Company, a Fortune 100 company founded in 1845, is the largest mutual life insurance company in the United States and one of the largest life insurers in the world. Headquartered in New York City, New York Life's family of companies offers life insurance, retirement income, investments and long-term care insurance. New York Life Investments provides institutional asset management and retirement plan services. Other New York Life affiliates provide an array of securities products and services, as well as institutional and retail mutual funds.

Visit New York Life’s Web site at for more information.

Note to Editors: New York Life was the number one seller of fixed immediate annuities in 2009, according to an industry source. Source: LIMRA International, U.S. Individual Annuity Sales Survey, Fixed Immediates, Fourth Quarter YTD 2009 results. (Fixed Immediates include Fixed Period Annuities.) New York Life was the largest seller of individual life insurance, according to an industry source. Note: Sales based on all planned recurring premiums plus 100% of reported single premiums. Source: LIMRA International, Fourth Quarter YTD 2009 Individual Life Insurance Sales Survey. Also, New York Life was the sixth largest seller of new individual long-term care insurance premium, according to an industry source. Source: LIMRA International, 2009 Individual Long-Term Care Sales Survey, adjusted for level premium pay plans plus 10% of limited premium pay plans.

Note: "New York Life" or "the Company," as used throughout this release, can refer either separately to the parent company, New York Life Insurance Company, or one of its subsidiaries, or collectively to all New York Life companies, which include the parent company and its subsidiaries and affiliates.

Please call 800-MAINSTAY (624-6782) for a prospectus. Investors are asked to consider the investment objectives, risks, and charges and expenses carefully before investing. The prospectus contains this and other information about the investment company. Please read the prospectus carefully before investing.

Securities distributed by NYLIFE Distributors LLC, 169 Lackawanna Avenue, Parsippany, New Jersey 07054.

MainStay and MainStay Investments are registered names under which New York Life Investments does business. New York Life Investments serves as the investment manager of the MainStay Funds. New York Life Investments is a service mark used by New York Life Investment Management Holdings LLC and its subsidiary, New York Life Investment Management LLC.

*Source: Fortune 500 2008 rankings (May 4, 2009 issue).

**Peer competitors' refers to a group of 13 domestic life insurance companies, both mutual and publicly traded, which New York Life has determined to be the set of its largest competitor companies, based in part on their similar profiles to New York Life with respect to markets served, products offered, and distribution methods.

***Source: LIMRA International with single premiums counted at 100%. See Note to Editors on page 4 for more detail.

****New York Life counts Agency insurance sales of single premiums at 50%.

*****Source: LIMRA International. See Note to Editors on page 4 for more detail.

******New York Life Investments

******New York Life Investments is a service mark used by New York Life Investment Management Holdings LLC and its subsidiary, New York Life Investment Management LLC. See Note to Editors for additional information.

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New York Life Reports 2009 Financial Results

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