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Lancashire profits rise to $43 million

Lancashire: profits rose

Insurer and reinsurer Lancashire yesterday posted pre-tax profits of $42.9 million.

The figure is $10 million up on the same period last year.

Gross premiums written dropped $12.2 million to $108.2 million quarter on quarter between last year and this.

And earnings per share rose four cents to $1.21 per diluted share in the third quarter.

Alex Maloney, group CEO, said: “The group’s results for the third quarter have once again been strong.

“Our return on equity of 3.1 per cent for the quarter and 10.5 per cent for the year to date demonstrate our ability to deliver excellent results throughout the insurance cycle and during challenging market conditions.

“These results are a tribute to the quality of our people throughout the group and an illustration of the fruits of disciplined underwriting and prudent risk selection.”

Mr Maloney added that Hurricane Matthew, which devastated parts of the Caribbean, particularly Haiti, before striking Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas, fell outside the financial reporting period.

But he said: “However, as an insured event affecting the US, the level of insured damage was less than it might have been in other circumstances.

“Matthew is an attritional loss for the insurance sector as a whole, certainly not of a size to constitute the market-moving event which sooner or later will occur.

“However, it is a timely reminder of the volatility and unpredictability of loss events in our industry and will contribute to the further erosion of margins and profitability across the sector.”

Elaine Whelan, Lancashire chief financial officer, added: “Our outlook for 2017 is a continuation of current market trends. However, we expect to be able to maintain our core book and consequently operate at a similar capital level to this year.

“We are therefore returning approximately $150 million of capital via a special dividend. That represents $121.7 million of comprehensive income for the year to date.

“We have now returned $2.7 billion, or 104.9 per cent of total comprehensive income, since inception.”