PartnerRe lost $66 million in the 2021 first quarter, due in part to market volatility and $104 million of net losses from Winter Storm Uri.
At the same time, the company has enjoyed momentum from rate increases, PartnerRe President and CEO Jacques Bonneau said in prepared remarks.
“The 2021 underwriting year started on a positive note from a pricing perspective, and we have seen continued momentum throughout our April 1 non-life renewals, while remaining focused on the execution of our strategy to improve profitability,” Bonneau said.
The company said non-life net premiums written grew 8 percent in the first quarter, versus the same period a year ago. Fueling this was a 12 percent jump in P/C net premiums written as well as improved pricing conditions during the quarter.
PartnerRe booked $40 million of non-life underwriting profit during Q1 2021, with a combined ratio of 96.7. That compares to a $46 million loss, and a combined ratio of 103.8, for the same period in 2020. At the same time, there was no change to PartnerRe’s $371 million estimated net loss for the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
PartnerRe’s P/C segment produced a 97.7 combined ratio for Q1 2021, versus a 94.3 combined ratio in the 2020 first quarter. The company said it saw improvements in the technical ratio from business mix changes. At the same time, the loss ratio increased relative to the 2020 first quarter due to $97 million of catastrophic losses for Winter Storm Uri, net of retrocession and reinstatement premiums.
The Specialty segment produced a 94.8 combined ratio for Q1, versus 121.1 in the 2020 first quarter. PartnerRe said the improvement stemmed from lower adverse prior years’ reserve development. As well, the technical ratio decreased from a 9.8-point reduction in the acquisition cost ratio, as well as a decrease in catastrophic losses in the 2021 first quarter. This included $7 million of losses from Winter Storm Uri, compared to $18 million of COVID-19 related losses during the 2020 first quarter.
PartnerRe produced $87 million in net investment income during Q1, down $16 million, or 16 percent versus the same period in 2020. Affecting this trend: Lower reinvestment rates, driven by big decreases in global risk-free rates in Q1 2020 and the impact of portfolio reallocations during 2020.