Lloyd’s insurer Novae has reported a 28% rise in gross written premiums for the first quarter of 2009 to £113.1m ($166.9m) from £88.5m in 2008.
Across all segments of the business, rate increases for the first three months averaged 5%. Property business recorded widespread rate increases, particularly on US risks, while in most areas of liability business rates generally have stopped falling, Novae said.
In financial institutions there has been widespread evidence of rate hardening. Elsewhere, although rates have stopped falling they are yet to show any real benefit from rate increases.
“This year has begun well, with rates improving strongly with those classes linked either to the natural catastrophe events of 2008 or to the turmoil in the financial markets,” said Matthew Fosh, group CEO of Novae. “Other classes, though stabilising as expected, are yet improve materially, in part because recession-related losses have not emerged. When they do we are well positioned from the rating environment that will follow.”
Investment return for the first quarter was £7.5m, equivalent to a return on average assets invested for the period of 0.68%.