Harleysville Insurance Hammered by 2d Quarter Catastrophe Losses

July 10, 2008

Regional property/casualty insurer Harleysville Group Inc. reported that estimated second quarter catastrophe losses from storms in the Midwest and elsewhere will be the most the insurer has faced in a quarter in more than 20 years.

The losses will reduce operating income by $0.52 to $0.57 per share after taxes, and will impact the company’s statutory combined ratio between 10 and 11 points for the quarter.

Harleysville Group plans to announce its second quarter results on August 4.

“During the second quarter, we experienced a significantly greater frequency of severe weather throughout much of our operating territory, but especially in the Midwest. All told, we faced 14 second quarter storms that were classified as catastrophes,” said Michael L. Browne, Harleysville Group president and chief executive officer.

“While responding to catastrophes is a normal part of our business, this is the most we’ve experienced in a quarter since becoming a public company in 1986, and it’s projected to be a heavily impacted quarter for the industry as a whole,” Browne said.

Brown said the company remains confident in its financial position and the future of the organization— “as evidenced by the fact that we continue with our plans to buy back Harleysville Group stock.”

He said the company has the resources “necessary to respond promptly and assist the storm victims as they work to rebuild their lives.”

Source: Harleysville Insurance

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