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Argo Group reports $31.6m loss

Earnings news: Kevin Rehnberg, CEO of Argo Group

Argo Group International Holdings Ltd has reported a loss of $31.6 million, or 91 cents per common share, for the third quarter.

That was worse than the $25.1 million loss incurred in the same period last year. However, operating losses were lower at $11.9 million, compared to $15.2 million in the same three months in 2019.

The company’s combined ratio was 110.7 per cent, a year-on-year improvement from 111.4 per cent.

Kevin Rehnberg, chief executive officer of Bermudian-based Argo Group, said: “We are pleased with the improved underlying margins of our business during the quarter, as well as the actions taken to simplify operations and exit lines that do not meet profitability expectations or are not aligned with our strategy.”

It was announced this week that private equity investors Pelican Ventures and JC Flowers have agreed to acquire reinsurance franchise Ariel Re from Argo.

Mr Rehnberg added: "While the industry faced historic levels of catastrophe activity in the third quarter, we have continued to make progress on our strategic objectives.

“This progress combined with continued gross written premium growth within profitable lines of business, improvement in pricing and a plan to reduce expenses demonstrates our firm commitment to continuing on a path towards increased shareholder value.”

Argo reported that market conditions are favourable, with pricing increase above 10 per cent on average across its business.

The company aims to remove $100 million of expenses from the total incurred last year, and is targeting expense ratio of 36 per cent by the end of 2022; the expense ratio in the third quarter was 36.9 per cent.

For the three months to the end of September, Argo had gross written premiums of $890.2 million, up from $882.7 million a year ago.

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Published November 03, 2020 at 4:39 pm (Updated November 03, 2020 at 4:39 pm)

Argo Group reports $31.6m loss

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