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North Coast Life Calls Off Dividend

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North Coast Life Insurance Company has suspended the quarterly dividend on its preferred stock.

In October, the Spokane, Wash. company, announced a $393,000 drop in its surplus account for the first three quarters. Although it has seen improved persistency in its life insurance business since then, the company reports that its surplus account has shown further decline in the fourth quarter as a result of lower premium and investment income and higher policy expenses.

In addition to other cost cutting and revenue-generating measures, management decided to suspend its year-end preferred stock dividend.

Payment of future dividends will depend on growth of its premium and investment income, reduced overhead expenses, current and projected capital, and surplus levels, the company says.

To compensate its preferred Series A stockholders, the North Coast’s board voted to allow them to convert any of their Series A shares into 2 shares of common stock.