Small 2% increase is in contrast to other Lloyd's insurers' rate reductions

Novae bucked the trend among Lloyd’s insurers by reporting an overall increase in rates in the first nine months of 2010.

The insurer achieved average rate increases of 2%, although this was much lower than the 9% increases in the same period in 2009. Most Lloyd’s insurers have reported rate declines.

The company said there had been considerable variation in rate action by class, with increases in motor, financial institutions, political and credit, which have seen significant claims activity. Elsewhere, rates were flat or lower.

Novae wrote £473.3m of gross premium in the first nine months of 2010, up 54% from the £308.2m it wrote in the same period of 2009. Novae attributed £117m of the £165.1m increase to Novae Re and the European property and personal accident team. The motor unit formed in 2008 contributed a further £20.6m.

Novae said the three earthquakes this year – Chile, Haiti and New Zealand – had collectively cost the company $15m net of reinsurance.