Travelers Earnings Drop 11% in 1Q

April 24, 2008

Travelers Cos. Inc., one of the largest property insurers in the United States, said Thursday that earnings fell 11 percent in the first quarter, as catastrophe losses in the quarter more than doubled and investment income fell.

The St. Paul, Minn.-based insurer, which changed its name from St. Paul Travelers last year, said earnings were $967 million or $1.54 a share, compared with $1.09 billion or $1.56 a share in the year-ago quarter, on a greater number of shares outstanding.

Travelers reported first-quarter operating earnings, which analysts use to measure performance, of $1 billion, or $1.61 a share, beating analysts’ forecast of $1.54 a share, according to Reuters Estimates. In the year-ago quarter, it earned $1.1 billion, or $1.55 a share.

In the last 12 months, Travelers’ stock has fallen more than 10 percent, compared with a drop of more than 20 percent in the Standard & Poor’s insurance index.

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