U.S. Markets open in 5 hrs 4 mins

Prudential swings to 4Q loss on $1.2B yen charge

NEW YORK (AP) -- Insurer Prudential said Wednesday it took a loss in the fourth quarter after it took a charge of $1.2 billion related to the decreased value of the Japanese yen and other changes in currency exchange rates.

In recent quarters Prudential Financial Inc. has reported a slew of charges related to the lower value of the yen. Those included a $2.5 billion charge in the first quarter of 2013 and a $1.56 billion charge in the second quarter of the year. In the third quarter it reported $1.2 billion in gains as the yen increased in value compared to other currencies.

The company lost $427 million, or 94 cents per share, in the most recent quarter. It lost $185 million, or 42 cents per share, a year earlier. Excluding one-time charges and gains, the company said its income rose to $2.20 per share from $1.76 per share. Revenue fell 76 percent, to $10.98 billion from $46.15 billion.

Analysts expected income of $2.24 per share on $11.49 billion in revenue, according to FactSet.

In the fourth quarter of 2012 Prudential bought large pension funds from General Motors Co. and Verizon Communications Inc. GM paid Prudential $25 billion as part of the deal between the two companies, and Verizon paid it $2.5 billion.

The Hartford, Conn., company operates retirement and investment management businesses, as well as individual life and group insurance coverage. It is the second largest insurer in the U.S. after MetLife.

For the full year, Prudential lost $713 million, or $1.55 per share. Its revenue dropped 44 percent to $45.28 billion. Excluding special items its net income rose to $9.67 per share from $6.40 per share.

Shares of Prudential rose 20 cents to $82.72 on Wednesday, and then lost $1.77, or 2.1 percent, to $80.95 in after-hours trading.