10 November 2014News

Premium income and GWP fall at Hiscox in Q3

Hiscox saw a solid third quarter, despite a fall in its gross written premiums and shrinking in its reinsurance book.

Its gross written premiums (GWP) overall shrank slightly to £1.36 billion in the third quarter of 2014, compared with £1.37 billion in the third quarter of 2013.

But in its reinsurance segment, Hiscox said it was experiencing the same tough environment as everyone else, with its portfolio down 15 percent in US and down 10 percent in international business.

Hiscox Re’s premium income in the quarter fell substantially to $543 million compared with $615.6 million in the same period a year earlier, as it reduced its catastrophe reinsurance book due to tough market conditions.

“The contagion has only spread into insurance on big ticket property and energy lines. In other insurance lines, rates remain fairly flat with reasonable margins. We will walk away from business where rates and conditions are unhealthy,” the company said.

Hiscox Europe grew GWP by 8.8 percent, Hiscox UK grew GWP by 3.6 percent and Hiscox US grew GWP by 24.6 percent.

Bronek Masojada, chief executive, said: "Long term investment in our brand and in building our retail business has paid off as we continue to grow particularly in US, London Market and Europe, while we sensibly reduce our catastrophe reinsurance book."