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Empire announces 2004 year-end results

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Toronto, Ontario, April 6, 2005 – The Empire Life Insurance Company (Empire) presented year-end results for 2004 at the Company’s annual general meeting held today in Toronto. General fund assets and segregated fund assets combined to reach $5 billion, a milestone for Empire.

The Company reported shareholders’ net income of $35.1 million in 2004 compared to $17.8 million in 2003. The increase in shareholders’ earnings was a result of improved overall net income from the Company’s three major product lines: Wealth Management, Employee Benefits and Individual Insurance. Net earnings from Wealth Management were $6 million compared to $2 million in 2003. Less favourable claims experience in the Individual Insurance and Employee Benefits product lines did impact net income from those areas. Individual Insurance results were negative, however were an improvement from the loss experienced in 2003, due to a lower level of reserve strengthening in 2004’s annual reserve assumption update. Employee Benefits continued to show a profit with net income at $5 million. Capital and Surplus earnings increased to reach $34 million from $27 million in 2003.

"We are very pleased with our results for 2004," says Doug Hogeboom, President and Chief Executive Officer, "Sales and premium revenues for our Individual Insurance and Employee Benefits lines of business showed continued growth. In addition, deposits to our segregated fund products increased dramatically during the year, resulting in strong net sales. Shareholder net income almost doubled."

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