AMBAC Inc. yesterday announced net income of $50.9 million, or $1.44 per share, for the third quarter, an increase of 52% from the $33.5 million, or 95 cents per share, the bond insurer earned in last year's third quarter.

For the first nine months of 1993, AMBAC said profits were $140.8 million, or $3.99 per share, an increase of 47% from the $95.8 million or $2.73 per share earned in 1992.

The company attributed the growth in quarterly earnings in part to higher premiums earned and income from investments.

"Our strong third quarter core earnings growth reflects the continued strength of the municipal market as well as growing contributions from our new business initiatives," said Phillip B. Lassiter, AMBAC's chairman and chief executive officer.

AMBAC said it insured $10.2 billion of bonds during this year's third quarter, an increase of 42% from $7.2 billion in the same period last year.

Net premiums earned for the third quarter were $38.7 million, an increase of 20% from last year. About $20.1 million of the total was attributable to refundings and calls of AMBAC-insured bonds, the company said. In the third quarter of 1992, refundings and calls accounted for $17.2 million of the $32.3 million in net premiums earned.

AMBAC released the earnings after the close of the New York Stock Exchange yesterday. The company's shares closed up 1/8 point at 45 5/8.

Financial Guaranty Insurance Co. last week reported a 37% increase in third quarter profits, with net income of $48.1 million compared to $35.1 million in the same period last year.

Municipal Bond Investors Assurance Corp. is expected to announce quarterly earnings today.

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