XL reports $152.6m profit in solid start’
XL Group Ltd made a profit of $152.6 million, or 58 cents per share, during the first quarter. The result closely matched its performance during the same period last year, when it achieved $152.8 million, or 57 cents per share.
Natural catastrophe pre-tax losses, net of adjustments, were $73.2 million, compared to $96.1 million a year ago. While net favourable prior year development was $9.1 million, contrasting with an adverse development of $24 million in the first three months of 2017.
Mike McGavick, chief executive officer of the Bermudian-based company, said: “We are pleased with our solid start to 2018, in-line with our expectations. During the first quarter our performance reflected benefits of our market leadership, focus on underwriting discipline, strong culture of innovation, continuous improvement, and efficiency.”
Mr McGavick noted that XL grew its gross premiums written by more than 6 per cent compared with the corresponding quarter in 2017, and continued to improve the insurance loss ratio, excluding prior year development and the impact of catastrophe losses.
XL’s operating net income was $214.4 million, or 82 cents per share, compared to $136.1 million, or 50 cents per share, in the first quarter of 2017.
“We did see a lower reinsurance margin in the quarter, largely driven by our strategic initiatives including a shift in portfolio mix towards lower volatility and an increase in outward reinsurance protections,” Mr McGavick said.
“With respect to pricing, we are pleased to have achieved broad rate increases throughout our insurance and reinsurance portfolio, which will earn into our results over the rest of the year. Also during the quarter we had strong contributions from the investment portfolio, and we continued managing our expenses.”
Mr McGavick added: “As we look forward to the next phase in XL’s journey, with the proposed combination with AXA, we believe there is substantial opportunity to continue realising the potential of what we have built.”
In its property and casualty operations, XL’s gross premiums written were $4.92 billion, up from $4.62 billion a year ago. The P&C combined ratio edged slightly higher to 95.3 per cent, from 94.3 per cent during the same period of 2017.