Farmers Group had first-quarter earnings of $45.39...

Farmers Group had first-quarter earnings of $45.39 million, compared to $37.22 a year ago, it was announced by Richard G. Lindsley, chairman and chief executive. Revenue was $237.90 million, compared to $214.81 a year earlier. Preliminary first-quarter 1985 underwriting results for the three insurance exchanges that Farmers manages reflect improvement over last year's first-quarter results, especially in automobile coverages, Lindsley said. In terms of premium volume, automobile lines represent more than 70% of the business written by Farmers Group. Property and casualty results reflect positive revenue growth generated primarily from higher average premium levels, offset in part by higher operating costs. The effective tax rate was slightly lower compared to a year ago, principally because higher investment tax credits are anticipated within the current tax provision. Growth in net income of the life-insurance subsidiaries in the current period resulted primarily from higher investment income and continuing improvement in underwriting results on group business.

Reduced revenue through the sale of a number of hotels and increased operating costs produced a $1.3-million net loss for the first quarter, Ramada Inns reported. The loss came on revenue totaling $137.5 million. In the year-ago period, net income was $448,000 on revenue of $144.2 million. The current results included $2.8 million in gains from sale of four hotels, compared to $2.7 million in hotel sales a year earlier. Richard Snell, president and chairman, said that a $70-million expansion of Ramada's gaming centers in Las Vegas and Atlantic City was on schedule and that the company soon will announce "a new Ramada Inn concept as part of an aggressive development program to build back its asset base."

For details and reports of other firms, see accompanying tables.

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