NEW YORK - MBIA Inc. reported first-quarter earnings on Tuesday, posting an adjusted pre-tax income of $25 million compared to a loss of $90 million for the same period in 2010. But it was not enough to boost investor confidence and shares sank 2.79% to $9.75 in after-hours trading.

The adjusted book value fell to $35.57 per share on March 31, compared to $36.81 a share on Dec. 31, 2010. The adjusted book value is a measure that removes the impact of certain items which the company believes will reverse over time, as well as adds in the impact of certain items which the company believes will be realized in GAAP book value in future periods.

MBIA's insurer subsidiaries have not written new policies since 2008, but recognize premiums from deals wrapped before then. Its public finance operations, conducted through National Public Finance Guarantee Corp., recorded $111 million of adjusted income in the first quarter, compared to $132 million the year before. Executives say the lower income resulted from a decline in premiums earned, lower fees and reimbursements, and an increase in operating expenses.

The insurer's public finance arm earned $89 million of premiums, versus $114 million of premiums for first quarter 2010. The decline was a result of fewer debt refundings throughout the quarter, the firm said.

MBIA Insurance Corp, the structured finance arm, saw $20 million of adjusted pre-tax losses, compared to $113 million the previous year.

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