MGIC Investment Corp. reported first-quarter-2006 net income of $163.5 million, down 10.2 percent from $182 million earned in the same quarter a year ago.

Diluted earnings per share were $1.87 for the quarter ending March 31, 2006, down 1.6 percent from $1.90 for the same quarter a year ago.

Curt S. Culver, chairman and chief executive officer of MGIC Investment Corp. and Mortgage Guaranty Insurance Corp., said that the quarterly results benefited from positive joint-venture results and the expected seasonal decline in the delinquencies, which somewhat offset the decline of insurance in force and associated revenues.

Total revenues for the first quarter were $369 million, down 4.1 percent from $384.9 million in the first quarter of 2005. The decline in revenues resulted from a 5.2 percent decrease in net premiums earned to $299.7 million. Net premiums written for the quarter were $300.5 million, compared with $312.2 million in the first quarter last year, a decrease of 3.8 percent.

New insurance written in the first quarter was $10 billion, compared to $11.4 billion in the first quarter of 2005. New insurance written for the quarter included $2.1 billion of bulk business compared with $2.5 billion in the same period last year.

The delinquency inventory was 76,362 as of March 31, 2006, of which the company estimates 3,100 delinquencies are the result of Hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma. At March 31, 2006, the percentage of loans that were delinquent, excluding bulk loans, was 4 percent, compared with 4.52 percent at Dec. 31, 2005, and 3.77 percent at March 31, 2005.

Losses incurred in the first quarter were $114.9 million, up 14 percent from $98.9 million reported for the same period last year.

Underwriting expenses were $75.4 million in the first quarter, up from $68.8 million reported for the same period last year.

Income from joint ventures, net of tax in the quarter, was $39.1 million, up from $34.2 million for the same period last year.

MGIC Investment Corp. (NYSE:MTG) stock traded at $69.50 a share this morning.

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