Ambac Financial Group Inc. yesterday reported a fourth-quarter net loss of $2.34 billion in 2008, which compares to a $3.27 billion fourth-quarter net loss in 2007, as it prepares to launch muni-only subsidiary Everspan Financial Guaranty Corp.

Ambac said the net loss reflected a $594.4 million net change in the fair value of derivatives, in addition to an increase in the deferred tax asset valuation allowance, increased loss provisions related to residential mortgage-backed securities, and mark-to-market and realized losses on terminations related to derivative products within the financial services segment.

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