The Wall Street Journal: MetLife opts for spinoff of life insurance operations

MetLife Inc. is opting for a spinoff to existing shareholders as it divests a big chunk of its U.S. life-insurance business, resolving one of the key questions about its plan to shrink for regulatory and strategic reasons.

The plans, filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, put in motion the spinoff of operations representing about a fifth of the company’s most recent annual earnings. The company announced this summer the new company will be known as Brighthouse Financial.

The filing doesn’t preclude a switch in coming months to an initial public offering, analysts said.

In announcing the jettisoning in January, MetLife MET, +2.50% had left open the possibility of a sale.

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