NU Online News Service, Feb. 26, 10:37 a.m. – Total profits of U.S. life and health insurers fell to $3.4 billion for the first three quarters of 2002, down 61% from the profit total for the first three quarters of 2001, according to Weiss Ratings Inc., Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.

Weiss says it has not recorded such a low industry profit total for the first three quarters of a year in at least a decade.

Profits fell so low partly because life and health insurers suffered $9.6 billion in capital losses on investments sold during the first three quarters of 2002, up from $3.3 billion in investment losses for the comparable period in 2001, Weiss says.