Chubb operating income beats estimates

  • Evan Greenberg, chairman and CEO of Chubb

Chubb Limited has reported fourth quarter profit of $355 million, or 76 cents per share, a fall of about 76.8 per cent year-on-year.

Core operating income was $935 million, or $2.02 per share, down from $3.17 per share, however that beat Wall Street expectations, with eight analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research expecting the earnings to come in at $1.93 per share.

The Zurich-based company’s property and casualty combined ratio was 93.1 per cent. Its after-tax catastrophe losses for the quarter were $506 million.

For the full year, Chubb achieved a $4 billion profit, or $8.49 per share, up 2.6 per cent, with core operating income of $4.4 billion, up 16.5 per cent.

Evan Greenberg, chairman and chief executive officer, said: “Chubb performed well in a quarter marked by elevated natural catastrophe losses, on the one hand, and stronger premium revenue growth, improved commercial P&C pricing globally and record net investment income, on the other.

“Core operating income was $935 million compared with $1.5 billion prior year, which included a one-time tax benefit and lighter CAT activity. Our P&C combined ratio of 93.1 per cent included 8.5 points of pre-tax CAT losses.”

Mr Greenberg said the full year results provided “a more meaningful perspective given the natural quarter-to-quarter volatility of the risk business”.

He said: “Net premiums written grew 4.5 per cent. The full-year P&C combined ratio was 90.6 per cent, compared to 94.7 per cent [in the] prior year, and that’s with $1.6 billion of CAT losses — about $700 million more than we expected.”

Mr Greenberg added: “We have good momentum as we execute on our business initiatives across the globe and take advantage of an improving price and underwriting environment that the industry needs. Our organisation is optimistic about the year ahead and we are off to a good start.”