For more coverage from TheStreet.com Ratings team, check out TheStreet.com Ratings section.Life and health insurers' profits were all but wiped out in the first half of the year, according to a quarterly review of the nation's 1,000 insurers. The industry earned a mere $370 million in the six months through June, down 98% from $21 billion in the same period in 2007. Seventeen AIG ( AIG) insurers contributed nearly half, or $9.5 billion, to the year-over-year decline. The 17 affiliates lost a combined $6.6 billion in the first half, compared with a $2.9 billion profit in the first half of 2007. American General, composed of AIG's seven domestic life insurers, came under fire in Congress last week for holding an expensive junket soon after AIG's mid-September government bailout. The unit lost $2 billion in the first half. Conseco Life Insurance of Texas, a unit of Conseco Group ( CNO), contributed $1.5 billion to the decline, but this drop was primarily due to the divestiture of the unit's Bankers Life subsidiary. Conseco Life of Texas lost $20 million in the same period last year. But losses were not confined to those 18 insurers. In fact, 247 companies, 24% of the industry, lost money during the first half. They were primarily annuity writers, with $134 billion in annuity premiums in 2007. Insurers that sell variable annuities earn fees associated with the value of the underlying assets. When the value of those underlying assets declines, as has been the case over the last several months, fee income also falls. MetLife ( MET) recently lowered its third-quarter earnings guidance based on expected lower fee revenue.