February 15, 2018 / 7:29 AM / 9 months ago

Insurer Lancashire warns of tough year ahead, swings to loss

Feb 15 (Reuters) - Property and casualty insurer Lancashire Holdings Ltd forecast that 2018 would be another challenging year for the industry, and swung to a full-year loss as it weathered the costliest year ever for insurers and reinsurers due to natural catastrophes.

The company, which writes policies for heavy-duty assets such as oil rigs, ships and aircraft, reported a pretax loss of $72.9 million for the twelve months ended Dec. 31, 2017. It had reported a pretax profit of $150.4 million a year ago.

The insurer’s gross written premiums fell about 6.7 percent to $591.6 million in the period, and its combined ratio deteriorated to 124.9 percent from 76.5 percent last year.

“I expect 2018 to be another challenging year for our industry, but I am confident... that the Lancashire Group has the appropriate business model, talent and access to capital to maximise underwriting opportunities to benefit our shareholders,” CEO Alex Maloney said.

Reporting by Noor Zainab Hussain and Esha Vaish in Bengaluru; Editing by Amrutha Gayathri

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