Foreign exchange hits profits after strong performance

Lloyd’s insurer Hardy Underwriting Bermuda announced GWP was up more than 50% in its first half results, but pre-tax profits fell.

Financial highlights (2008 in brackets)

  • Gross written premium £149.9m (£97.0m)
  • Profit before tax and foreign exchange movements £18.7m (£7.3m)
  • Profit before tax of £7.8m (£8.7m)
  • Combined ratio before foreign exchange movements 75.7% (85.0%)
  • Combined ratio of 87.7% (83.3%)
  • Rates on 2009 renewals increased by 6.5% across the portfolio

David Mann, chairman, said: “There are clear signs that recovery is underway in the insurance market and the ratings increases we have witnessed across several of our major classes of business are very encouraging.”

Barbara Merry, Hardy's chief executive, said: “The long term trend of underwriting performance is key and the combined ratio before foreign exchange movements of 75.7% again demonstrates the consistency, quality and depth of our expertise.

“We could not be more fortunate in having a strong, committed team, a robust balance sheet and a fantastic brand.”