CLEARWATER, Fla., March 8, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Homeowners Choice, Inc. (Nasdaq:HCII), a Florida-based provider of homeowners' insurance, today announced its results of operations for the three months and year ended Dec. 31, 2010. Fourth Quarter 2010 Net income for the fourth quarter of 2010 was $1.8 million, or $0.27 per diluted share, compared with net income of $0.8 million, or $0.11 per diluted share, for the fourth quarter of 2009. Gross premiums earned for the fourth quarter of 2010 increased to $30.0 million from $25.9 million in the prior year quarter. Net premiums earned (gross premiums earned reduced by premiums ceded to reinsurance companies that cover certain of the risks from hurricanes and other catastrophes) for the fourth quarter of 2010 increased 25 percent to $15.5 million from $12.4 million in the prior year quarter. During the fourth quarter of 2010, reinsurance costs were 49 percent of the company's gross premiums earned, compared with 52.1 percent in the prior year quarter. Homeowners Choice also reported investment income and other income of $390,000 and $820,000, respectively, for the fourth quarter of 2010. Investment income was $556,000 and no significant other income was reported in the prior year fourth quarter. In addition, the company reported realized gains on investments sold during the quarter ended Dec. 31, 2010 of $469,000. The company had no significant realized investment gains during 2009. Losses and loss adjustment expenses for the fourth quarter were $8.2 million compared with $6.0 million in the prior year quarter. Policy acquisition and other underwriting expenses for the three months ended Dec. 31, 2010 and 2009 were $4.2 million and $3.9 million, respectively. Other operating expenses, which include a variety of general and administrative costs, for the three months ended Dec. 31, 2010 and 2009 were $1.9 million and $1.7 million, respectively.