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Argo posts net loss of $12.1m

Argo Group International Holdings Ltd made a net loss of $12.1 million for the third quarter of 2011 as natural catastrophes took their toll on the company’s bottom line.

That compared to a net income of $23 million during the same period last year. For the first nine months of the year the re/insurer recorded a net loss of $83.8 million or $3.06 per share in contrast to a profit of $69.8 million or $2.31 per share over the same time frame.

The company also reported a total revenue of $303.5 million versus $333.3 million in the third quarter of 2010, while gross written premiums were $448.5 million compared to $398.3 million in the same period last year.

Argo Group’s CEO Mark Watson said: “It has been a challenging quarter in a year of significant catastrophe activity for the industry. We are pleased, however, that the overall financial strength of the company remains sound. In addition, the growth in premiums written we achieved in the quarter will benefit our results in the future. The platform that we have built and the strategic actions we have taken position us well to achieve sustained profitable growth.”

The quarter pre-tax loss before net realised investment and other gains and losses and foreign currency exchange gains and losses was $11.9 million versus pre-tax income of $25.7 million the previous year.

The net after-tax operating loss per share in the quarter was 37 cents versus net after-tax operating income per share of 69 cents for the same period in 2010.

Estimated pre-tax catastrophe losses net of estimated reinstatement premiums were $26.7 million in the quarter and aggregate reinsurance cover losses were approximately $10 million. Catastrophe losses net of estimated reinstatement premiums were $12.8 million for the third quarter of 2010.

The company’s combined ratio was 114.1 percent and 101.3 percent for the three months ended September 30 2011 and 2010, respectively.

The impact of catastrophe activity on the combined ratio, including losses related to the aggregate reinsurance covers, was 13.7 percent and 4.4 percent in 2011 and 2010, respectively.

For the first nine months of the year, total revenue was $936.7 million compared to $1.1 billion for the same period in 2010.

Gross written premiums were $1.2 billion versus $1.2 billion for the first nine months of 2010;

The year-to-date pre-tax loss before net realised investment gains and losses and foreign currency exchange gains and losses was $97.8 million versus pre-tax operating income of $56.5 million in the first nine months of 2010.

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Published November 05, 2011 at 1:00 am (Updated November 07, 2011 at 8:29 am)

Argo posts net loss of $12.1m

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