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Title Industry Remains Strong in First Half 2004

September 29, 2004

Washington, DC – The American Land Title Association (ALTA) released figures today which reveal a strong financial picture for the title insurance industry through the first half of 2004.

“Total revenue for the first half of 2004 looks high because it actually includes income that had not been reported from the previous year,” according to ALTA director of research, Rich McCarthy. “The usual lag between closing and reporting of revenue was exacerbated by the rush of refinancings during the last half of 2003,” he said.

First half 2004 gross revenue (total operating income) for the industry is up 7.96 percent over 2003 (itself a record year) to $7.6 billion, and the loss ratio (losses and loss adjustment expenses as a percentage of total operating income) is 4.27 percent as compared to 3.89 percent for the first six months of last year. The level of pre-tax profit (before investment income) was $396 million in 2004 as compared to $453 million during the same period in 2003. On an after-tax, after investment income basis, industry profits totaled $406.8 million down from 2003’s figure of $431.9 million.

“It stands to reason that losses have increased as the amount of business has increased dramatically over the last two years,” said McCarthy.

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