W. R. Berkley Corporation on Monday reported net income for the second quarter of 2013 of $116 million, or 82 cents per share, compared with $109 million, or 76 cents per share, for the second quarter of 2012.
Second quarter highlights included:
- Net premiums written increased 12.7%.
- Average rates on renewed policies increased 6.5%.
- GAAP combined ratio was 96.6%.
- Return on equity of 10.8%.
Commenting on the Company's performance, William R. Berkley, chairman and chief executive officer, said: "We are pleased with the second quarter's results. Our improved performance was driven by higher underwriting margins and a declining expense ratio. The benefits from improved underwriting results more than offset the decline in investment income.
"Our cumulative rate increases since 2010 are in excess of 18%, and our premium volume has grown by over 30% in the past two years. Our Company continues to improve its relative competitive position while avoiding the extreme volatility impacting the general marketplace. We expect our returns to increase as our earned premium reflects the recently improved pricing levels.
"The current bond market yields continue to impact our investment income. In spite of the recent improvement in yields, new purchases result in substantially lower returns than maturing securities. We continue to search for attractive opportunities but we are still unwilling to extend the duration or diminish the quality of our portfolio. Overall, yields will remain under pressure, although we anticipate benefiting from capital gains through the balance of the year.
"We are confident that our growth will continue and our returns will improve for the foreseeable future," Mr. Berkley concluded.
About W. R. Berkley Corporation
Founded in 1967, W. R. Berkley Corporation is an insurance holding company that is among the largest commercial lines writers in the United States and operates in three segments of the property casualty business: Insurance-Domestic, Insurance-International and Reinsurance-Global.