Mortgage insurer Radian Group (RDN) earned $112.2 million in the third quarter, or 84 cents a share as mortgage defaults saw a double-digit drop from a year ago. The company reported a loss of $70.5 million for the year-ago third quarter. Radian chief executive S.A. Ibrahim said there are signs of credit stabilization and declines in mortgage delinquencies despite the economy's challenges. Of the total amount of mortgages with primary insurance, Radian reported 130,049 in default, a 14% drop from a year ago. Primary mortgage delinquencies dropped 5.8% from the previous quarter, the third-straight quarter of declines. "We are also pleased that Radian maintained its 21% market share of high-quality business as the private mortgage insurance industry continued to slowly recapture market share from the FHA," Ibrahim said. Radian wrote new primary insurance for $3.2 billion of mortgages in the third quarter, down 6% from a year ago but up from $2.7 billion the previous quarter. The risk-to-capital ratio for Radian Guaranty, the company's primary mortgage insurance subsidiary, reached 17.2 to 1 for the third quarter, up from 16.1 to 1 a year ago. Radian paid $494.2 million in insurance claims in the third quarter, excluding the $142.7 million to terminate 4,325 loans from its delinquent inventory. The company expects to pay $420 million more in the fourth quarter and another $1.7 billion for all of 2011. Write to Jon Prior.