Q4 2011 Earnings Call

March 01, 2012 8:00 am ET


Greg Diamond - Head of Equity Investor Relations

Joseph W. Brown - Chief Executive Officer, Director and Member of Finance and Risk Committee

C. Edward Chaplin - Co-President, Chief Administrative Officer, Chief Financial Officer, Vice-Chairman of MBIA Insurance Corporation and Chief Financial Officer of MBIA Insurance Corporation

Anthony McKiernan - Chief Portfolio Officer and Vice President


Arun N. Kumar - JP Morgan Chase & Co, Research Division

Mark Palmer - BTIG, LLC, Research Division

Derek Horton

Alex Ehrhart

David Williams

Steven Stern



Good morning, and welcome to the MBIA Inc.'s Fourth Quarter 2011 Financial Results Conference Call. [Operator Instructions] I would now like to turn the call over to Greg Diamond, Managing Director of Investor Relations at MBIA. Please go ahead.

Greg Diamond

Thank you, Latricia. Welcome to all to MBIA's Conference Call for the Fourth Quarter 2011 Financial Results. We're going to follow a similar format as last quarter's call. Jay Brown and Chuck Chaplin will provide some brief comments and then we'll open the call for a question-and-answer session. As usual, members of the press and representatives from institutions litigating against us will not be able to ask questions on the call. For today's call, Chuck will be referencing a slide deck during his remarks and that deck can be found on MBIA's website. More specifically, the deck is posted on the Events and Presentations web page of the Investor Relations section of the mbia.com website.

After the market closed yesterday, we posted several other items on our website, including our 2011 10-K and the operating supplement for the fourth quarter, as well as the statutory statements for both National Public Finance Guarantee Corporation and MBIA Insurance Corporation. In addition, the information to access the recorded replay of today's call is available on the website via the financial results press release that we issued yesterday.

The purpose of our call today is to discuss our most recent 10-K, to facilitate a greater understanding of the company for investors. Our company's definitive disclosures are incorporated in our SEC filings. The 10-K also contains information that may not be addressed on today's call. Please note that anything said on today's call is qualified by the information provided in the company's 10-K and other SEC filings. Please read our Form 10-K for 2011, as it contains our most current and comprehensive disclosures about the company and its financial and operating results.

Now I will read our Safe Harbor disclosure statement. Our remarks on this conference call may contain forward-looking statements. Important factors such as general market conditions and the competitive environment could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected in our forward-looking statements. Risk factors are detailed in our 10-K, which is available on our website at mbia.com. The company cautions not to place undue reliance on any such forward-looking statements. The company also undertakes no obligation to publicly correct or update any forward-looking statement if it later becomes aware that such statement is not likely to be achieved. Also, please refer to our financial results, press release available on our website for the definitions and a reconciliation of the non-GAAP terms that are included in our remarks today.

Now Jay will provide some introductory comments. Jay?

Joseph W. Brown

Thanks, Greg, and good morning, everyone. Chuck will take you through our financial results in a moment. But before he does, I want to share a few thoughts on where we stand today in our efforts to transform your company for the future. My comments will be brief as Chuck has fairly extensive comments to make on last year's results.

Looking back, 2011 brought us much closer to achieving the transformation goals that I set out for us 4 years ago. We made significant progress on a number of fronts during the year, particularly as we reduced volatility and potential future losses in our insured portfolio through negotiated settlements of ABS CDO and commercial real estate exposures. At the same time, we advanced our putback suits toward trial while receiving several various favorable rulings along the way. Although we still have a way to go, I feel comfortable in saying that we're very much closer to the end of the process than the beginning. This progress has not been inexpensive. We commuted or reached agreements to commute $32.4 billion of insured exposure in 2011 at a cost of approximately $2.5 billion. But we believe that cost is well worth the confidence gained by eliminating potential future losses in our insured book.

Since the end of 2008, we have negotiated termination agreements on approximately $61 billion of exposure. Our commutation efforts continue and they are focused on a small handful of transactions where future volatility remains a concern. The litigation challenging our transformation continued its slow journey through the legal system in 2011, but we saw a measurable progress nonetheless. Seven banks dropped out during the year and one more this past January, which leaves only 4 of the original 18 plaintiffs.

We continue our efforts to resolve our differences with each of these plaintiffs out of court. But in the absence of that, a trial, if necessary, for the Article 78 is scheduled for next quarter. More than 3 years after Transformation was approved, MBIA Insurance Corporation continues to honor all of its obligations while maintaining substantial positive steps toward capital. So we fully expect the court to conclude that the company was solvent at the date of transformation, and the insurance department's decision to approve transformation was appropriate.

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