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$925mn cat losses sees Chubb’s Q3 operating income fall 27%

28th October 2020 - Author: Charlie Wood

Global re/insurer Chubb saw catastrophe losses reach $925 million in the third quarter, up from $232 in the prior year quarter.

ChubbThe current quarter pre-tax catastrophe losses are primarily attributable to severe weather-related events globally of $696 million and wildfires of $110 million.

Core operating income fell 26.6% to $907 million against $1,236 million in Q319.

Net income for the quarter was $1,194 million versus $1,091 million in the prior year period.

The P&C combined ratio was 95.2% compared to 90.2%, while the P&C current accident year combined ratio excluding cat losses was 85.7%, compared with 89.5% in 2019.

The 3.8 percentage points of margin improvement were comprised of 2.7 percentage points in the loss ratio and 1.1 percentage points in the expense ratio.

Pre-tax net investment income was $840 million and adjusted net investment income was $900 million.

“In the third quarter, Chubb performed well despite a challenging environment that included the continued struggle by many nations to address the impact, both health and economic, of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as a record number of natural catastrophes for the insurance industry globally,” said Evan G. Greenberg, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Chubb.

“With strong and continuously improving underwriting conditions in most all regions of the world, we grew P&C net premiums written 6.5% in the quarter in constant dollars, comprised of 10.8% growth in our commercial P&C business and a 3.3% decline in consumer lines.

“Commercial P&C revenue grew 11% in North America and 12% in our international business. New business growth was up briskly, and we retained our renewal business at very high levels. The global pandemic continues to depress consumer activity and, as a result, premiums declined in our global A&H and international personal lines divisions.

“We expect both to begin to recover sometime in 2021. On the other hand, our North America high net worth personal lines business is benefiting from a flight to quality and grew about 3% in the quarter.”

Greenberg added that the current commercial P&C market is a natural response to prolonged industry underpricing of risk and the loss cost and interest rate environment.

“I believe the favorable trend will endure. Where we can get paid adequately to assume the risk and volatility, we are growing our exposures across the portfolio while achieving rates that exceed loss costs, and that means margin improvement.

“We have the people, the capabilities, the execution-oriented culture, and the command and control structure to continue capitalizing on this underwriting environment, and we expect to grow our EPS through both revenue growth and improved margins.”

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