American Equity Investment Life Holding has reported net income of $31.3m or $0.53 earnings per share, compared to $14.9m or $0.26 earnings per share in the same period a year-ago.

Operating income for the first quarter of 2011 was $30.6m, compared to $25.8m in the same period last year.

Total revenues for the first quarter of 2011 were $453m, compared to $350m in corresponding quarter of the last year.

Annuity sales for the first quarter of 2011 grew 58% to $1.3bn compared to first quarter 2010 annuity sales of $847m. 

The 58% increase in year over year sales for the first quarter of 2011 highlighted the company’s pattern of growth, including increases in earnings, invested assets and book value per common share.

American Equity founder and executive chairman David Noble said that American Equity is well-positioned to capitalize on growth trends in the fixed annuity market. With the reputation for best-in-class service, the company seek to be the carrier of choice for policyholders and producers.