National Western Life Insurance Company has reported consolidated net earnings of $14.4 million for the first quarter of 2008, compared to $18.7 million for the same period of 2007.

Operating revenues, excluding realized investment gains and losses and derivative losses, totaled $123.2 million for the quarter, an increase of 4% from revenues of $118.5 million reported in the same quarter of 2007.

The company’s net investment income, excluding derivative losses, increased to $84 million for the period compared to $81.6 million during the corresponding quarter of 2007.

Life insurance sales were up 20% in the first quarter over the comparable period of 2007, and the company has registered an increase in annuity sales which were 3% higher in the quarter compared to the first quarter of 2007.

Ross Moody, president of National Western Life Insurance Company, said: While we continuously monitor our investment portfolio, particularly in this tough credit market, for possible impairment issues under the accounting rules, we are at the same time pleased with the investment performance of our portfolio and the absence of significant write-downs in our financial statements over the past several years.