Alongside the results for the Lloyd’s syndicates in which they have an interest – 33 and 6104 – Hiscox also released their preliminary group results, on a GAAP not a year-of account basis, this morning (https://www.hiscoxgroup.com/news/press-releases/2019/25-02-19).

They are “a good result in a challenging year for insurers” showing growth in premium income, profit and underwriting results. 

 

All in USD

2018

2017

Difference

Gross premiums written

3,778.3m

3,286.m

15.0%

Net premiums earned

2,573.6m

2,416.2m

6.5%

Profit before tax

137.4m

39.7m

246.1%

Profit before tax excluding FX

151.1m

120.6m

25.3%

Underwriting result

148.m

43.m

244.2%

Earnings per share

0.45

0.12

275.8%

Total ordinary dividend per share for year

0.42

0.40

5.3%

Net asset value per share

8.19

8.35

-1.9%

Group combined ratio

94.90%

99.90%

-5.0%

Group combined ratio excluding FX

94.40%

98.80%

-4.5%

Return on equity

5.60%

1.50%

273.3%

Investment return

0.70%

2.00%

-65.0%

Foreign exchange losses

-13.7m

-80.9m

-83.1%

Reserve releases

326.5m

324.2m

0.7%

This result augurs well for market leading operations which seem to be reaping the benefit of better rates in the market as seen by higher levels of premium income.  The press release noted that market-wide rate increases in 2018 were not as high as had been hoped following the very challenging environment in 2017.  Nevertheless, there were parts of the market which did rise sufficiently for Hiscox to take advantage.

Across all segments of the organisation, Hiscox was able to achieve double-digit growth with the London Market business being identified as a standout performer for returning to profit and growth after three years of disciplined cycle management.

It is a very positive sign that Hiscox is able to achieve a combined ratio of 94.9% in what was the 4th most costly catastrophic year on record.  The objective for Hiscox in 2019 is to grow, but at a slightly slower pace to that achieved in 2018.  It is anticipated that investment returns and further improvement to underwriting results will create greater profits.

Please follow this link  to the Hiscox presentation for analysts: https://www.hiscoxgroup.com/sites/group/files/2019-02/19736%20-%20Analysts%20Presentation%20Feb%202019_Web.pdf