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UPDATE 1-Loews adjusted profit falls as Diamond Offshore weighs

Monday, 28 Oct 2013 | 7:45 AM ET

* Loews 3rd-qtr adj net income fell to $324 mln from $343 mln

3rd-qtr net investment income falls 5 pct

* CNA Financial's operating income up about 25 pct

Oct 28 (Reuters) - Loews Corp, controlled by the billionaire Tisch family, reported lower adjusted net income for the third quarter as profit nearly halved at the conglomerate's Diamond Offshore Drilling Inc unit and overall investment income fell.

The company's adjusted profit fell even though its biggest holding, insurer CNA Financial Corp, reported a 25 percent jump in its operating profit due to higher premium income and lower non-catastrophe losses.

The hotel, energy and financial services conglomerate reported a 59 percent jump in profit as it booked a smaller impairment charge in its HighMount Exploration & Production unit in the latest reported quarter.

Net profit rose to $282 million, or 73 cents per share, from $177 million, or 45 cents per share, a year earlier.

Excluding the charges, adjusted net income fell to $324 million from $343 million.

Loews' net investment income fell 5 percent to $647 million.

Diamond Offshore, Loews' second-largest business, said on Thursday quarterly profit fell due to previously disclosed cash flow issues for two of its customers.

Net operating income at CNA Financial rose to $269 million, or $1 per share, from $216 million, or 80 cents per share, a year earlier.

Analysts on average had expected earnings per share of 76 cents for CNA, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

"We ... are encouraged by the margin improvement, the ongoing favorable rate trends, and the continued shift in our book of business toward focus customer segments," CNA Chief Executive Thomas Motamed said in a statement.

Shares of Loews, which has a market cap of about $18.82 billion, closed at $48.81 on Friday on the New York Stock Exchange. They have risen about 5 percent since the company last reported quarterly results.

CNA shares closed at $39.69 on Friday. They touched their year high of $39.96 on Oct. 22.

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