NEW YORK, September 4, 2007—Assurant, Inc. ("Assurant") (NYSE: AIZ), a premier provider of specialty insurance and insurance-related products and services, announced today that it has ended the company's current stock buyback program and does not expect to initiate a new program in 2007. In light of its continuing involvement with the SEC Staff's investigation into certain loss mitigation products, Assurant determined that it is prudent to extend the normal quarterly blackout period for company stock transactions, which restricts the company's ability to initiate a new stock repurchase program. Going forward, the company will evaluate any further extension of the company's normal blackout period and the potential to implement a new buyback program.
J. Kerry Clayton, Assurant's interim president and chief executive officer, said "We remain focused on disciplined capital management to assure value for our shareholders. We will continue to make investments that support the organic growth of our businesses and continue to evaluate opportunities to make strategic acquisitions in our existing core business segments or in new specialty areas."
In August the company repurchased 1.3 million shares at a cost of $65.5 million, for a 2007 total of 5.7 million shares at a cost of $312.6 million. The current authorization, which was approved on November 10, 2006, has $261 million remaining, although the current program has ended as noted above. Total shares outstanding are 118 million as of August 31, 2007. Since 2004, Assurant has repurchased 26 million shares for $1.1 billion.
Assurant is a premier provider of specialized insurance products and related services in North America and selected international markets. Its four key businesses -- Assurant Solutions; Assurant Specialty Property; Assurant Health; and Assurant Employee Benefits -- have partnered with clients who are leaders in their industries and have built leadership positions in a number of specialty insurance market segments worldwide.
Assurant, a Fortune 500 company and a member of the S&P 500, is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol AIZ. Assurant has over $25 billion in assets and $7 billion in annual revenue. www.assurant.com
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