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Fidelity National Financial's CEO Discusses Q1 2011 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

During the quarter, we eliminated more than 600 positions in our title operations and made significant progress on our previously stated $50 million cost savings project, identifying nearly $55 million in run rate cost savings. Our quarterly results also included one-time expenses of $9 million, or $0.04 per diluted share, representing our portion of the costs related to the Remy's debt restructuring in late 2010 and early 2011. Overall, this is a very positive start to what most experts have predicted will be a very difficult year in the mortgage and real estate markets. We believe we have our company positioned for strong performance for the remainder of 2011.

We made modest stock repurchases during the quarter, repurchasing an approximately 800,000 shares at an average price of $13.84 for total proceeds of $11 million. We have a bond payment due in August of this year of approximately $165 million and, therefore, are conserving some cash to ensure that could be made on a timely basis.

Under our current authorization, we can still repurchase up to 9.2 million shares through July of 2012. We will continue to monitor the market and repurchase shares from time to time. Additionally, Remy filed an S-1 registration statement in March to begin the process of selling common stock and becoming a publicly traded company. Remy intends to sell up to $100 million in common stock and a public offering. Because of rules surrounding an IPO, we restricted from discussing any of the potential details of the transaction at this time.

Let me now turn the call over to our CEO, George Scanlon.

George Scanlon

Thank you, Bill, and good morning, everybody. We are pleased with our performance to start the year in what is normally our most challenging quarter of the year. While total revenue for the company was flat, we were able to almost double our pretax profits over the prior year. This resulted from a combination of favorable revenue mix and ongoing disciplined cost management and also highlights the upside earnings leverage in our business when title volumes normalize in the future.

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