Catholic Financial Life earnings fall on low interest rates

Plans to hire 20 employees this year

Bill O'Toole, president and CEO of Catholic Financial Life.

Milwaukee-based life insurance organization Catholic Financial Life today reported lower 2015 earnings, partly driven by the persistent low interest rate environment.

Bill O'Toole, president and CEO of Catholic Financial Life.
Bill O’Toole, president and CEO of Catholic Financial Life.

The private nonprofit’s net income was $9.6 million in 2015, down from a record $10.8 million in 2014. Leaders attributed the decline to an increase in death claims and a lower net investment earned rate related to the continuing low interest rate environment.

Catholic Financial Life reported $125.9 million in revenue in 2015, down from $126.9 million in 2014. It increased sales of first-year annual pay life insurance by 10 percent year-over-year, to $2 million, driven by an 18 percent increase in sales to the Hispanic market and a continued focus on the core life insurance business, leaders said.

Its total adjusted capital including surplus was a record $66.3 million last year, up from $54.6 million in 2014.

CFL’s assets totaled $1.4 billion at the end of 2015, flat from 2014. The company had $5.1 billion of insurance in force at the end of 2015, flat from 2014.

Dividends paid out increased 6 percent on average in 2015.

“We continue to focus on our life insurance business, a conservative investment approach, and providing an exceptional experience for our members,” said Bill O’Toole, president and chief executive officer. “As a result, we enjoy 97 percent persistency, which is a testimony to our advisors and associates.”

The company also announced it plans to hire about 20 people this year. The positions include advisors, sales managers and home office associates in its marketing and information technology departments.

“We are looking for individuals who want to grow professionally in a team environment, be rewarded for achieving goals, and believe in helping everyday people achieve financial security,” O’Toole said.

Catholic Financial Life has about 110,000 members nationwide, down from 112,000 last year.

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