A group of life insurance companies has released performance data for commercial mortgage loans based on an index that is the first benchmark for the private commercial mortgage market, according to the companies.The LifeComps index is based on actual historical data that enable investors to compare their commercial mortgage loan performance with the market aggregate as well as that of other asset classes. The index was created in 1996 by The Equitable, John Hancock, Northwestern Mutual, Principal Financial, and Prudential Insurance Co., and started collecting data from participants in 1997, the companies said. Since then, Allstate LIC, Connecticut General, and Guardian Life have also elected to participate in the survey. For the third quarter, the index showed a total return of 0.581%. Tom Jensen, a senior portfolio manager at Allstate and chairman of LifeComps, said the index "provides a long-term benchmark that will allow the commercial mortgage asset class to mature and be better understood by investors in commercial mortgage whole loans."

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