Hartford Financial Services Group Inc.’s earnings fell in the second quarter, hurt by claims from tornado damage.
Operating earnings fell 9 percent to $696 million.
Net income for the second quarter was down 13 percent to $543 million, from $627 million a year ago for the same period.
The Hartford said catastrophe losses in the quarter were $171 million, up from $52 million in the same period a year ago. The company cited losses from tornadoes and thunderstorms that ripped through the Midwestern and Southeast states.
Net written property-casualty premiums fell 3 percent to $2.6 billion.
“We delivered good results in some very tough markets this quarter, even with higher than average catastrophes,” said The Hartford’s chairman and chief executive officer Ramani Ayer.
The property and casualty operations reported a combined ratio of 90.7 percent, excluding catastrophes and prior year development.
Personal lines written premiums for the quarter were $1.0 billion, down 1 percent from the prior year. Written premiums in the company’s AARP business increased 2 percent in the second quarter. Agency written premiums were down 8 percent over the prior year, largely due to non-renewals in advance of the company’s plans to reduce its property exposure in Florida.
Personal lines reported a combined ratio of 98.1 percent for the second quarter of 2008, including 9.8 points of current accident year catastrophe losses.
Written premiums for small commercial were $679 million for the second quarter, down 2 percent from the prior year.
Small commercial delivered an 89.8 percent combined ratio for the quarter, including 5.2 points of current accident year catastrophe losses and reserve releases of 0.3 points.
Written premiums for middle market were $513 million for the second quarter of 2008, a decline of 4 percent over the prior year. The lower written premium was driven by price decreases, which were partially offset by increased sales of workers’ compensation policies and better customer retention.
The middle market combined ratio of 99.8 percent for the second quarter included 5.8 points of current accident year catastrophe losses and reserve releases of 3.9 points. The second quarter also included 2.0 points of workers’ compensation policyholder dividends.
In specialty commercial, written premiums for the quarter were $362 million, a decrease of 11 percent from the prior year.
Specialty commercial reported a combined ratio of 94.7 percent for the second quarter of 2008, including 1.9 points of current accident year catastrophe losses and reserve releases of 4.2 points.
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