Atrium Underwriters Limited has provided us with updated forecasts for the open 2020 and 2021 underwriting years of Syndicate 609 as follows:

Year of account

Capacity
£000s

Revised forecast Range

Previous Forecast
Range

Change at
Midpoint

2020

523,824

5.0% to 10.0%

7.5% to 15.0%

3.8 points worse

2021

624,854

0.0% to 10.0%

0.0% to 10.0%

unchanged

The forecast for the 2020 account reflects the current investment climate, with the fixed income portfolio suffering mark to market losses as interest rates have increased in the year so far. The portfolio continues to be high quality, short dated government and corporate bonds, and the benefit of the higher yields now available will be to the younger years of account. The managing agent has also made an increased allowance for inflation, in particular the risk that the existing development patterns may not offer a reliable indicator of future run off patterns.

Atrium comments that underlying trends for the 2020 year are particularly strong, with the lowest incurred loss ratio since 2014. The pure year result remains set to be exceptionally good, dragged down by the factors above.

We can find no previous example of Atrium reducing a syndicate forecast at this late a stage of development in more than 25 years.

The 2021 year has exposure to potential claims arising out of leased aircraft in Russia. The reserving approach has been to assess the many loss scenarios and to assign probabilities to the possible outcomes. It is encouraging that despite the managing agent’s well known conservatism, the forecast remains in profit. Atrium does note, however, that the range of outcomes is very wide and that the published range does not represent the more extreme outcomes.

The early signs for the 2022 year of account are good, with the syndicate on track to deliver the strong profit set out in the syndicate plan.

Forecasts are expressed as a percentage of syndicate allocated capacity and are after all standard personal expenses, but before members’ agents’ fees and charges. These forecasts are subject the assumptions below. Given the ongoing nature of covid-19, and the associated economic impact, coupled with the potential losses arising out of the conflict in Ukraine and the possible aviation claims in Russia, particular attention is drawn to assumptions 1 and 6.

1. Inherent volatility in claims development will not give rise to actual ultimate claims which are materially divergent from expectations. In particular there will be no significant distortion in the incidence of major catastrophe or attritional losses or in the ability of the syndicates’ reinsurers to respond to potential reinsurance recoveries;

2. The development of open year premiums will be broadly consistent with historical development patterns;

3. There will be no material change in reserving methodology or accounting policies at the respective dates of closure of the open years;

4. Inflation, interest and exchange rates as at the respective dates of closure of the open years will not differ significantly from those taken into account in the forecasts;

5. There will be no material unbudgeted expenses; and

6. Investment returns will be materially in line with investment manager expectations.