RenRe impacted by Texas storm and investment losses
Winter Storm Uri, which brought widespread snow and ice to Texas in February, had a significant negative impact on RenaissanceRe's first quarter performance, alongside large mark-to-market losses on its investment portfolio.
The reinsurer reported a $290.9 million loss, or $5.87 per common share, compared to a loss of $81.9 million for the same period a year ago.
RenRe's combined ratio for the first three months of the year was 103.1 per cent, compared to 93 per cent in the first quarter of 2020.
The company said Winter Storm Uri had caused widespread damage in the US, predominately in Texas, and had a $179.8 million net negative impact on net loss, primarily in the property segment, which once combined with the company’s underwriting elsewhere, left RenRe with an underwriting loss of $35.8 million for the period.
It had fee income of $24 million.
RenRe’s net realised and unrealised investment losses were $345.5 million, which reduced to a total investment loss of $265.7m after subtracting net investment income of $79.8 million that was achieved during the quarter.
The company increased its gross premiums written by 30.9 per cent to $2.65 billion. During the quarter, it repurchased 1.1 million of its common shares at an average price of $159.47, and between April 1 and April 23 repurchased an addition 330,000 shares at an average price of $167.62.
Kevin O’Donnell, president and chief executive officer of the Bermudian-based reinsurer, said: "We materially grew our underwriting portfolio while returning significant capital to our shareholders during a quarter that was negatively impacted by Winter Storm Uri and volatile capital markets.
"Going forward, we anticipate additional opportunities to grow into a broadly improving market by matching desirable risk with efficient capital, both on our wholly owned balance sheets and in our industry-leading RenaissanceRe Capital Partners business.
He added: "Together with improved yields in our investment portfolio, this diligent execution of our strategy will further contribute to shareholder value creation."