The U.S. property/casualty industry saw net income after taxes plummet 42.2 percent to $7.7 billion in first-quarter 2017 from $13.4 billion for the same period in 2016—the lowest net income since fourth-quarter 2012, according to a new report from ISO, a Verisk Analytics business, and the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America (PCI).
Catastrophes cost insurers $7.3 billion in Q1 2017—the highest first-quarter catastrophe losses since the 1994 Northridge earthquake and $2.3 billion above the direct catastrophe losses for first-quarter 2016. There were 13 catastrophe events in the quarter, with the three largest accounting for $4.4 billion in direct losses.
Among the study’s other findings:
- The combined ratio for the quarter deteriorated to 99.6 percent compared to 97.4 percent in Q1 2016.
- Net written premiums were $135.4 billion, up from $130.2 billion in first-quarter 2016. That’s a growth rate of 4.0 percent compared to 3.2 percent in 2016.
- Net investment gains increased by $1.2 billion to $14.4 billion for the quarter.
- Industry surplus reached an all-time high of $709.0 billion.