US P&C industry sees $8.2bn net underwriting loss in Q1: AM Best

16th June 2023 – Author: Jack Willard

The US property & casualty (P&C) witnessed an $8.2 billion net underwriting loss in the first quarter of 2023, compared with a $3.4 billion gain in the same prior-year period, according to preliminary results.

Combined ratio for the P&C industry deteriorated by 6.1 percentage points to 102.0 in Q123, compared to the prior year quarter,

Catastrophe losses accounted for an estimated 6.9 points on the three-month 2023 combined ratio, three points higher than in the prior-year period.

These results are detailed in a new report from AM Best, titled “First Look: Three-Month 2023 US Property/Casualty Financial Results.” The data is also derived from companies’ three-month 2023 interim statutory statements that were received as of May 30, 2023, representing an estimated 98% of the total P&C industry’s net premiums written.

Elsewhere, Q123’s underwriting loss, driven predominantly by personal lines losses, coupled with a 29.7% decline in net investment income, drove pre-tax operating income down 70.7% to $7.5 billion. With tax expense and realized capital gains down 39.5% and 53.2%, respectively, the industry’s net income slid 70.7% to $8.1 billion.

In addition, industry surplus increased 3.9% from the end of 2022, to $1 trillion, as $42.7 billion of net income, change in unrealized gains, contributed capital, and other surplus gains was reduced by $4.7 billion of stockholder dividends.

Net premiums written were $217 billion for the quarter, representing a 14.7% increase from $189.2 billion from Q122.

Net income for the quarter was $8.1 billion, a 70.7% decrease compared to last year’s $27.7 billion.

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