The Hanover Sees Profit Jump

May 7, 2010

A renewal rights agreement and its growing specialty lines business helped The Hanover see a 62 percent, first quarter jump in profits to $41.8 million, up from $25.8 million in the year-ago period.

“It was a difficult weather quarter for the insurance industry as a whole, and accordingly, we had an elevated level of catastrophe losses,” said CEO Frederick Eppinger. “However, our core loss performance improved over prior periods and we were able to deliver a combined ratio below 100. We had industry-leading growth during the quarter, driven by recent investments we have made in our commercial and specialty businesses, both of which position us to achieve an improved earnings trajectory in future periods.”

The company’s combined ratio improved to 99.7 from 101.1.

Net premiums written in personal lines were $349.6 million in the quarter, relatively static compared with the $347.2 million seen in first quarter last year.

In commercial lines, net premiums written were $375.3 million in the first quarter of 2010, an increase of $92.6 million, or nearly 33 percent, over the $282.7 million in net premiums written in the first quarter of 2009. The Hanover credited the growth to a renewal rights agreementr with OneBeacon as well as continued growth in its specialty-lines business.

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