October 22, 2019 / 10:59 AM / 21 days ago

Travelers profit slumps 44% on higher asbestos claims

Oct 22 (Reuters) - Property and casualty insurer Travelers Cos Inc reported a 44% drop in third-quarter profit on Tuesday, hurt by an underwriting loss due to an increase in asbestos reserve costs.

New York-based Travelers, often seen as a bellwether for the insurance sector, posted an underwriting loss of $149 million, compared to a gain of $198 million, a year earlier. (reut.rs/2N0ugti)

The insurer said it set aside $220 million more towards asbestos claim reserves in its business insurance segment, compared to a year earlier.

Net income fell to $396 million, or $1.50 per share, in the quarter ended Sept. 30 from $709 million, or $2.62 per share, a year earlier.

The Dow component’s total revenue rose about 4% to $8.01 billion.

Reporting by Bharath Manjesh in Bengaluru; Editing by Bernard Orr

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