Equitable Group Reports Third Quarter 2011 Results, Increases Common Share Dividend

TORONTO, Nov. 2, 2011 /CNW/ - Equitable Group Inc. (TSX: ETC) and (ETC.PR.A) ("Equitable" or the "Company") today reported its financial results for the three and nine months ended September 30, 2011 and announced an increase in its common share dividend.

THIRD QUARTER PERFORMANCE
The Company's mortgage portfolio produced strong earnings and credit performance in the third quarter in spite of an operational provision related to an alleged mortgage fraud in the amount of $5 million pre-tax ($0.24 per share) ("the provision") related to these loans (see "Operational Provision" below).

In the third quarter:

  • Diluted earnings per share ("EPS") increased 60.8% to $0.82 from $0.51 a year ago;
  • Adjusted EPS on a diluted basis (see "Adjusting for Accounting Changes" below) was $0.84, or $1.08 excluding the provision, compared to $0.84 a year ago;
  • Adjusted net income was $13.6 million, or $17.2 million excluding the provision, compared to $13.5 million a year ago;
  • Adjusted net income available to common shareholders increased to $12.7 million, or $16.3 million excluding the provision, from $12.6 million a year ago;
  • Net interest income was $34.8 million, up 14.0% from $30.5 million a year ago;
  • Total assets reached a record $10.3 billion at period end, up 18.9% from a year earlier  as total mortgage production increased 41.2%, led by single family conventional mortgage production growth of 55.2%;
  • Return on equity ("ROE") was 13.7% compared to 9.9% a year ago;
  • Adjusted ROE for the third quarter was 14.0%, or 17.9% excluding the provision, compared to 16.2% a year ago;
  • Productivity ratio on a taxable equivalent basis ("TEB") was 42.8%, or 29.2% excluding the provision;
  • Equitable Trust's total capital ratio was 16.3% (including collective allowance) compared to 16.5% at September 30, 2010;
  • Book value per share at period end increased 15.3% to $24.02 compared to $20.83 a year ago.

DIVIDEND INCREASE AND DECLARATIONS
The Company's Board of Directors announced a 9.1% annualized increase in the Company's common share dividends and declared the third quarter common share dividend of $0.12 per share, an increase of $0.01 per share, payable on January 3, 2012, to common shareholders of record at the close of business on December 15, 2011. This is the second common share dividend increase in 2011. The Board also declared a quarterly dividend in the amount of $0.453125 per preferred share, payable on December 31, 2011, to preferred shareholders of record at the close of business on December 15, 2011.

MANAGEMENT COMMENTARY
"The third quarter featured several meaningful accomplishments, including a 41% increase in mortgage production, record quarterly net interest income and outstanding credit performance," said Andrew Moor, President and CEO. "By capitalizing on our strategies for service excellence and our expanding national presence, we funded almost $380 million in conventional single family residential mortgages, surpassing second quarter production by almost 31% and production in this business line a year ago by over 55%.  As a result of this growth, ongoing success in our other business lines and long-term adherence to strict underwriting and risk management practices, Equitable's mortgage portfolio is increasingly well positioned to deliver high quality earnings growth in the quarters ahead. While the alleged fraud is unwelcome, it is isolated to a small group of condominium corporation loans in the portfolio and will not distract us from our longer-term plan to build value for our shareholders.  Overall, the fundamentals of our business are strong."

MORTGAGE PORTFOLIO AND CREDIT HIGHLIGHTS

  • Single Family Lending Services originated $379.9 million of conventional mortgages or 40.0% of total third quarter production to bring conventional production for this business line to $886.2 million for the first nine months of 2011 from $732.9 million in the corresponding period of 2010;
  • Commercial Mortgage - Broker Services originated $84.5 million of mortgages or 8.9% of total third quarter production to bring nine-month production to $234.7 million compared to $216.5 million a year ago;
  • Commercial Lending Services originated $187.9 million of conventional mortgages or 19.8% of total production to bring total conventional production for this business line over the first nine months of 2011 to $375.0 million from $196.7 million in the same period a year ago.

At quarter end:

  • Conventional mortgage principal increased 20.1% or $690.9 million during the 12 months ended September 30, 2011 to $4.1 billion;
  • Securitized assets increased 17.1% or $769.1 million year over year to $5.3 billion at September 30, 2011 and included $207.7 million in single family residential mortgage assets previously originated as conventional loans that the Company insured and securitized as part of its ongoing strategy to manage funding costs;
  • Net impaired mortgages improved to 0.23% of total mortgage principal, compared to 0.38% a year ago and 0.29% at June 30, 2011;
  • Mortgage principal in arrears 90 days or more was 0.24% compared to 0.40% a year ago and 0.27% at June 30, 2011.

NINE MONTH PERFORMANCE

  • Diluted EPS increased 44.8% to  $2.81 from $1.94 a year ago;
  • Adjusted EPS on a diluted basis was $2.81, or $3.05 excluding the provision, compared to $2.56 a year ago;
  • Adjusted net income was $45.2 million, or $48.8 million excluding the provision, compared to $41.0 million in the same period of 2010;
  • Adjusted net income available to common shareholders increased to $42.4 million, or $46.0 million excluding the provision, from $38.3 million a year ago;
  • Net interest income increased 13.0% to $98.4 million from $87.1 million a year ago;
  • ROE was 16.4% compared to 13.1% a year ago;
  • Adjusted ROE was 16.4%, or 17.7% excluding the provision, compared to 17.0% a year ago;
  • Productivity ratio on a TEB was 33.3%, or 28.5% excluding the provision, compared to 26.5% a year ago.

OPERATIONAL PROVISION
In a press release dated August 23, 2011 the Company reported an alleged fraud relating to four condominium corporation loans with a total outstanding balance of approximately $14.0 million. This amount has been reduced to $13.9 million as a result of a partial recovery. Management has engaged external counsel to assist in this matter. The Company has commenced an action against several parties to the subject loan transactions and has been named, along with other defendants, in two separate statements of claim made by parties seeking relief from mortgage amounts owing. Management will defend these claims and will cross claim against a number of the defendants and will continue to review all legal options available to it in pursuing its recourse. In addition to any potential recoveries under its claims, the Company will also claim under its Financial Institution Bond, which is intended to protect against fraud losses, however, there is no assurance that proceeds or recoveries, if any, will be received in a timely manner or that such proceeds will be sufficient to recover the full amount of the loans. Accordingly, the Company recorded a pre-tax operational provision of $5.0 million ($0.24 per share) in the third quarter and reclassified the mortgages in question from mortgages receivable to other assets. While the total loss, if any, arising from this alleged fraud cannot be definitively determined at this time, management has established the allowance based on the information available at the reporting date and will continue to assess the progress of recovery efforts and the resulting estimate of recoverable amounts.

ADJUSTING FOR ACCOUNTING CHANGES
Results for both reporting periods were prepared using International Financial Reporting Standards ("IFRS"), with a transition date of January 1, 2010. As a result, prior period comparative information in this news release reflects conversion from previous Canadian Generally Accepted Accounting Principles ("GAAP") to IFRS. In addition to being affected by differences in the method of accounting for securitized assets, the restatement of the Company's financial results from previous Canadian GAAP to IFRS is affected by differences in the method of accounting for the related derivatives that are within its securitization activities, including the activities it undertakes to hedge interest rate risk associated with mortgage commitments and mortgages issued but awaiting securitization, as well as the interest rate risk associated with the respective securitization liabilities. In order to help readers, the Company analyzes its 2011 performance by comparing it to 2010 on an adjusted basis, which removes gains and losses associated with unmatched derivative measurement accounting. Adjusted figures are non-GAAP financial measures and do not remove the operational provision taken in the third quarter.

LOOKING AHEAD
"While market perceptions of risk have been heightened, and are factored into our business strategies, we remain confident in Equitable's ability to create value through profitable growth at this stage of the economic cycle," said Mr. Moor. "With respect to production, we expect to continue to expand our conventional mortgage assets in chosen markets and over the coming year, to reduce securitization activity related to multi-family insured mortgages as part of our strategy to grow earnings and maintain our strong capital position. Included in our fourth quarter outlook is an expectation that conventional single family mortgage originations will remain strong and at levels similar to the fourth quarter of 2010. Net interest margin should also remain stable for the remainder of the year, even with the potential for a minor contraction should the Bank of Canada reduce its benchmark-setting rate. In total, we believe earnings should reflect the momentum associated with recent expansion in our conventional mortgage assets."

In respect of Canadian real estate, management has long focused on urban centres where it believes long-term fundamentals (such as diversified local economies and population growth) support demand. Management will continue to apply this approach, along with its traditional discipline in setting loan-to-value ratios and other prudent lending criteria going forward within its active sales strategies.

Q3 CONFERENCE CALL
The Company will hold its third quarter conference call and webcast at 9:00 a.m. ET Thursday November 3, 2011. To access the call live, please dial in five minutes prior to 416-644-3417. To access a listen-only version of the webcast, please log on to www.equitabletrust.com under Investor Relations.

A replay of the call will be available until November 11, 2011 and it can be accessed by dialing 416-640-1917 and entering passcode 4481312 followed by the number sign. Alternatively, the call will be archived on the Company's website for three months.

INTERIM CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS            
                   
CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS (unaudited)                
AS AT SEPTEMBER 30, 2011                
With comparative figures as at December 31, 2010, September 30, 2010 and January 1, 2010
($ THOUSANDS)                
                   
    September 30, 2011 December 31, 2010 September 30, 2010 January 1, 2010
                 
Assets                
Cash and cash equivalents $ 173,122 $ 155,242 $ 242,663 $ 389,170
Restricted cash   80,050   86,570   32,811   25,372
Investments   550,004   413,330   377,124   302,292
Mortgages receivable   4,121,858   3,468,507   3,434,379   2,763,020
Mortgages receivable - securitized   5,301,081   4,748,794   4,529,066   4,137,247
Other assets   28,276   11,686   7,989   15,191
  $ 10,254,391 $ 8,884,129 $ 8,624,032 $ 7,632,292
                 
Liabilities and Shareholders' Equity                
Liabilities:                
   Deposits $ 4,671,138 $ 3,878,853 $ 3,838,997 $ 3,332,319
   Securitization liabilities   5,077,052   4,531,680   4,335,118   3,885,187
   Deferred tax liabilities   7,930   7,086   7,664   5,191
   Other liabilities   24,666   19,884   17,726   14,959
   Bank term loans   12,500   12,500   27,500   27,500
   Subordinated debentures   52,671   52,671   37,671   37,671
    9,845,957   8,502,674   8,264,676   7,302,827
                 
Shareholders' equity:                
   Preferred shares   48,494   48,494   48,494   48,494
   Common shares   129,193   128,068   127,692   127,336
   Contributed surplus   4,538   3,935   3,784   3,267
   Retained earnings   239,689   202,187   180,503   155,890
   Accumulated other comprehensive loss   (13,480)   (1,229)   (1,117)   (5,522)
    408,434   381,455   359,356   329,465
                 
  $ 10,254,391 $ 8,884,129 $ 8,624,032 $ 7,632,292
                 

CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF INCOME (unaudited)        
FOR THE THREE AND NINE MONTH PERIODS ENDED SEPTEMBER 30, 2011        
With comparative figures for the three and nine month periods ended September 30, 2010        
($ THOUSANDS, EXCEPT PER SHARE AMOUNTS)                
                 
  Three months ended Nine months ended
  September 30, 2011 September 30, 2010 September 30, 2011 September 30, 2010
                 
Interest income:                
     Mortgages $ 53,627 $ 46,531 $ 151,950 $ 130,134
     Mortgages - securitized   54,470   50,343   159,232   145,936
     Investments   2,624   2,136   7,551   5,791
     Other   977   915   3,244   2,220
    111,698   99,925   321,977   284,081
Interest expense:                
     Deposits   29,992   25,307   84,984   70,037
     Securitization liabilities   45,757   42,951   135,136   123,509
     Bank term loans   205   467   608   1,361
     Subordinated debentures   880   653   2,612   1,929
     Other   105   54   212   107
    76,939   69,432   223,552   196,943
Net interest income   34,759   30,493   98,425   87,138
Provision for credit losses   1,991   2,776   6,146   7,204
Net interest income after provision for credit losses   32,768   27,717   92,279   79,934
Other income:                
     Fees and other income   925   606   2,569   2,247
     Net gain on investments   121   144   108   20
    1,046   750   2,677   2,267
Net interest and other income   33,814   28,467   94,956   82,201
Non-interest expenses:                
     Compensation and benefits   5,849   4,752   16,862   14,073
     Other   9,895   3,653   17,746   10,364
    15,744   8,405   34,608   24,437
Income before income taxes and fair value loss   18,070   20,062   60,348   57,764
Fair value loss on derivative financial instruments - securitization activities   (368)   (7,118)   (1)   (13,300)
Income before income taxes   17,702   12,944   60,347   44,464
Income taxes:                
     Current   3,866   2,706   14,342   11,634
     Deferred   473   1,652   844   1,021
    4,339   4,358   15,186   12,655
Net income   13,363   8,586   45,161   31,809
Dividends on preferred shares   907   907   2,719   2,719
Net income available to common shareholders $ 12,456 $ 7,679 $ 42,442 $ 29,090
                 
Earnings per share:                
     Basic $ 0.83 $ 0.51 $ 2.84 $ 1.95
     Diluted $ 0.82 $ 0.51 $ 2.81 $ 1.94
                 

CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF COMPREHENSIVE INCOME (unaudited)        
FOR THE THREE AND NINE MONTH PERIODS ENDED SEPTEMBER 30, 2011            
With comparative figures for the three and nine month periods ended September 30, 2010
($ THOUSANDS)                
                     
      Three months ended Nine months ended
      September 30, 2011 September 30, 2010 September 30, 2011 September 30, 2010
                     
Net income $ 13,363 $ 8,586 $ 45,161 $ 31,809
Other comprehensive income (loss), net of tax:                
  Available for sale investments:                
    Net unrealized gains (losses) from change in fair value   (1,781)   2,411   (55)   3,418
    Reclassification of net (gains) losses to income   (184)   77   (177)   987
  Cash flow hedges:                
    Net unrealized losses from change in fair value   (9,340)     (11,841)  
    Reclassification of net gains to income   (169)     (178)  
Other comprehensive (loss) income   (11,474)   2,488   (12,251)   4,405
Comprehensive income $ 1,889 $ 11,074 $ 32,910 $ 36,214

CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF CHANGES IN SHAREHOLDERS' EQUITY (unaudited)        
FOR THE THREE MONTH PERIOD ENDED SEPTEMBER 30, 2011            
With comparative figures for the three month period ended September 30, 2010            
($ THOUSANDS)                        
                         
September 30, 2011 Preferred
shares
Common
shares
Contributed
surplus
Retained
earnings
Accumulated
other
comprehensive
income (loss)
  Total
                         
Balance, beginning of period $ 48,494 $ 129,054 $ 4,292 $ 228,881 $ (2,006) $ 408,715
Net income   -     -     -     13,363   -     13,363
Other comprehensive income, net of tax   -     -     -     -     (11,474)   (11,474)
Contributions from reinvestment of dividends   -     139   -     -     -     139
Contributions from exercise of stock options   -     -     -     -     -     -  
Dividends:                        
     Preferred shares   -     -     -     (907)   -     (907)
     Common shares   -     -     -     (1,648)   -     (1,648)
Stock-based compensation   -     -     246   -     -     246
Transfer relating to the exercise of stock options   -     -     -     -     -     -  
Balance, end of period $ 48,494 $ 129,193 $ 4,538 $ 239,689 $ (13,480) $ 408,434
                         
                         
                         
September 30, 2010 Preferred
shares
Common
shares
Contributed
surplus
Retained
earnings
Accumulated
other
comprehensive
income (loss)
  Total
                         
Balance, beginning of period $ 48,494 $ 127,631 $ 3,613 $ 174,316 $ (3,605) $ 350,449
Net income   -     -     -     8,586   -     8,586
Other comprehensive income, net of tax   -     -     -     -     2,488   2,488
Contributions from reinvestment of dividends   -     61   -     -     -     61
Contributions from exercise of stock options   -     -     -     -     -     -  
Dividends:                        
     Preferred shares   -     -     -     (907)   -     (907)
     Common shares   -     -     -     (1,492)   -     (1,492)
Stock-based compensation   -     -     171   -     -     171
Transfer relating to the exercise of stock options   -     -     -     -     -     -  
Balance, end of period $ 48,494 $ 127,692 $ 3,784 $ 180,503 $ (1,117) $ 359,356

CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF CHANGES IN SHAREHOLDERS' EQUITY (unaudited)        
FOR THE NINE MONTH PERIOD ENDED SEPTEMBER 30, 2011            
With comparative figures for the nine month period ended September 30, 2010            
($ THOUSANDS)                        
                         
September 30, 2011 Preferred
shares
Common
shares
Contributed
surplus
Retained earnings Accumulated
other
comprehensive
income (loss)
  Total
                         
Balance, beginning of period $ 48,494 $ 128,068 $ 3,935 $ 202,187 $ (1,229) $ 381,455
Net income   -     -     -     45,161   -     45,161
Other comprehensive income, net of tax   -     -     -     -     (12,251)   (12,251)
Contributions from reinvestment of dividends   -     415   -     -     -     415
Contributions from exercise of stock options   -     599   -     -     -     599
Dividends:                        
     Preferred shares   -     -     -     (2,719)   -     (2,719)
     Common shares   -     -     -     (4,940)   -     (4,940)
Stock-based compensation   -     -     714   -     -     714
Transfer relating to the exercise of stock options   -     111   (111)   -     -     -
Balance, end of period $ 48,494 $ 129,193 $ 4,538 $ 239,689 $ (13,480) $ 408,434
                         
                         
                         
                         
September 30, 2010 Preferred shares Common
shares
Contributed
surplus
Retained
earnings
Accumulated
other
comprehensive
income (loss)
  Total
                         
Balance, beginning of period $ 48,494 $ 127,336 $ 3,267 $ 155,890 $ (5,522) $ 329,465
Net income   -     -     -     31,809   -     31,809
Other comprehensive income, net of tax   -     -     -     -     4,405   4,405
Contributions from reinvestment of dividends   -     232   -     -     -     232
Contributions from exercise of stock options   -     106   -     -     -     106
Dividends:                        
     Preferred shares   -     -     -     (2,719)   -     (2,719)
     Common shares   -     -     -     (4,477)   -     (4,477)
Stock-based compensation   -     -     535   -     -     535
Transfer relating to the exercise of stock options   -     18   (18)   -     -       -
Balance, end of period $ 48,494 $ 127,692 $ 3,784 $ 180,503 $ (1,117) $ 359,356
                         
                         

CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF CASH FLOWS (unaudited)
FOR THE THREE AND NINE MONTH PERIODS ENDED SEPTEMBER 30, 2011
With comparative figures for the three and nine month periods ended September 30, 2010
($ THOUSANDS)                
                   
    Three months ended Nine months ended
    September 30, 2011 September 30, 2010 September 30, 2011 September 30, 2010
CASH FLOWS FROM OPERATING ACTIVITIES                
Net income for the period $ 13,363 $ 8,586 $ 45,161 $ 31,809
Adjustments to determine cash flows relating to operating activities:                
  Financial instruments at fair value through income   3,537   948   4,636   5,223
  Amortization of capital assets   256   154   493   449
  Provision for credit losses   1,991   2,776   6,146   7,204
  Net gain on sale or redemption of investments   (105)   (41)   (92)   15
  Income taxes   4,339   4,358   15,186   12,655
  Taxes paid   (4,861)   (2,558)   (14,402)   (10,923)
  Stock-based compensation   246   171   714   535
  Amortization of premiums/discount on investments   834   553   2,506   1,421
  Net increase in mortgages receivable   (558,341)   (353,520)   (1,208,823)   (1,068,460)
  Net increase in deposits   416,867   378,249   792,285   506,678
  Change in obligations related to investments sold under repurchase agreements   (34,298)   (37,558)    
  Net change in securitization liability   300,811   164,120   545,372   449,931
  Other assets   (22,374)   1,976   (27,467)   2,350
  Other liabilities   (2,200)   (2,687)   (2,235)   (1,290)
Cash flows used in operating activities   120,065   165,527   159,480   (62,403)
CASH FLOWS FROM FINANCING ACTIVITIES                
  Dividends paid on preferred shares   (907)   (907)   (2,719)   (2,719)
  Dividends paid on common shares   (1,509)   (1,430)   (4,527)   (4,242)
  Proceeds from issuance of common shares       599   106
Cash flows used in financing activities   (2,416)   (2,337)   (6,647)   (6,855)
CASH FLOWS FROM INVESTING ACTIVITIES                
  Purchase of investments   (66,260)   (77,547)   (125,982)   (274,662)
  Proceeds on sale or redemption of investments   49,538   11,639   83,887   153,057
  Net change in Canada Housing Trust re-investment accounts   (13,430)   (4,377)   (20,961)   (7,617)
  Purchase of investments under reverse repurchase agreements   (151,268)   (69,862)   (181,376)   (289,281)
  Proceeds on sale or redemption of investments under reverse repurchase agreements   5,115   69,543   105,016   349,140
  Changes in restricted cash   (31,704)   (3,396)   6,520   (16,172)
  Purchase of capital assets   (1,242)   (72)   (2,057)   (447)
Cash flows used in investing activities   (209,251)   (74,072)   (134,953)   (85,982)
Net (decrease) increase in cash and cash equivalents   (91,602)   89,118   17,880   (155,240)
Cash and cash equivalents, beginning of period   264,724   153,545   155,242   397,903
Cash and cash equivalents, end of period $ 173,122 $ 242,663 $ 173,122 $ 242,663
                   
Supplementary cash flow information                
Net cash provided by (used in) operating activities include:                
  Interest paid $ 66,088  $ 63,329 $ 184,246 $ 167,729
  Interest received   108,356    94,788   312,609   274,856
  Dividends received   2,594    2,512   7,477   6,638
                   

ABOUT EQUITABLE GROUP INC.
Equitable Group Inc. is a niche mortgage lender. Our core business is first charge mortgage financing, which we offer through our wholly owned subsidiary, The Equitable Trust Company. Founded in 1970, Equitable Trust is a federally incorporated trust company. It serves single family, small and large commercial borrowers and their mortgage advisors. It also serves the investing public as a provider of Guaranteed Investment Certificates. Equitable is active in providing GICs across all Canadian provinces and territories. We actively originate mortgages across Canada, with offices in Ontario, Alberta and Quebec. Equitable Group's shares are traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbols ETC and ETC.PR.A respectively. Visit the Company on line at www.equitabletrust.com and click on Investor Relations.

CAUTIONARY NOTE REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS
Statements made by the Company in the sections of this report entitled "Management Commentary", "Operational Provision" and "Looking Ahead", in other filings with Canadian securities regulators and in other communications include forward-looking statements within the meaning of applicable securities laws ("forward-looking statements"). These statements include, but are not limited to, statements about the Company's objectives, strategies and initiatives, financial result expectations and other statements made herein, whether with respect to the Company's businesses or the Canadian economy. Generally, forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as "plans", "expects" or "does not expect", "is expected", "budget", "scheduled", "planned", "estimates", "forecasts", "intends", "anticipates" or "does not anticipate", or "believes", or variations of such words and phrases which state that certain actions, events or results "may" , "could", "would", "might" or "will be taken", "occur" or "be achieved." Forward-looking statements are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause the actual results, level of activity, closing of transactions, performance or achievements of the Company to be materially different from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements, including but not limited to risks related to capital markets and additional funding requirements, fluctuating interest rates and general economic conditions, legislative and regulatory developments, the nature of our customers and rates of default, and competition as well as those factors discussed under the heading "Risk Management" in the Management's Discussion and Analysis and in the Company's documents filed on SEDAR at www.sedar.com. All material assumptions used in making forward-looking statements are based on management's knowledge of current business conditions and expectations of future business conditions and trends, including their knowledge of the current credit, interest rate and liquidity conditions affecting the Company and the Canadian economy. Although the Company believes the assumptions used to make such statements are reasonable at this time and has attempted to identify in its continuous disclosure documents important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in forward-looking statements, there may be other factors that cause results not to be as anticipated, estimated or intended.  Certain material assumptions are applied by the Company in making forward-looking statements, including without limitation, assumptions regarding its continued ability to fund its mortgage business at current levels, a continuation of the current level of economic uncertainty that affects real estate market conditions, continued acceptance of its products in the marketplace, as well as no material changes in its operating cost structure and the current tax regime. There can be no assurance that such statements will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. The Company does not undertake to update any forward-looking statements that are contained herein, except in accordance with applicable securities laws.

SOURCE Equitable Group Inc.

For further information:

Andrew Moor
President and CEO
416-515-7000


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