PMI Group Inc., the second-largest U.S. mortgage insurer, said its third-quarter loss from continuing operations grew 35% from a year earlier, to $149.3 million, or $1.83 a share, as premiums declined and investment losses mounted.

The Walnut Creek, Calif., company said Monday that its net loss in the quarter nearly tripled, to $229.4 million, or $2.81 a share. Excluding one-time expenses, Wall Street analysts on average had expected it to report a loss of $2.42 a share.

PMI also said it will report $850 million to $900 million of paid claims this year for its U.S. mortgage insurance operations, versus a previous forecast of $900 million to $975 million.

Mortgage insurers such as PMI and MGIC Investment Corp. are reporting record losses as home foreclosures set records during what is becoming the biggest housing slump since the Great Depression.

Last month MGIC reported a third-quarter loss of $113.3 million, or 91 cents a share. The loss was the Milwaukee company's fifth in as many quarters.

PMI said its consolidated premiums decreased 12%, to $183.6 million, because of lower levels of new insurance written. It also reported investment losses of $49.9 million. A year earlier it had reported investment gains of $712 million.

Subscribe Now

Access to authoritative analysis and perspective and our data-driven report series.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.