Munich Re optimism as targets met

Munich Re is on course to meet its annual target as the firm’s half year results touched €1.6bn ($1.86bn), with reinsurance results making a large contribution to profits. “We are most certainly on track to reach our profit target of €2.1bn to €2.5bn for the year as a whole. We also made progress with the implementation of our strategy: Munich Re is becoming more profitable, more digital and leaner,” said Joachim Wenning, chairman of the Board of Management, Munich Re. The reinsurance field of business contributed €620m to Q2 results. The operating result amounted to €701m. Restructuring expenses hit Munich Re's non-operating result to the tune of €48m. Renewal volumes for July 2018 reached $2.7bn, 27% of this volume is from North America, 15% from Latin America, and14% from Australia, said the company. Previous developments continued into this year such as price increases due to natural catastrophes particularly in the Caribbean. The reinsurer saw a 0.9% overall price increase at the recent July renewal, excluding the effect from higher interest rates. Premium volume witnessed a 42% rise year on year to €3.3bn due to a large-volume treaty in Australia, and profitable growth of reinsurance quota share business in the USA, revealed the company. Due to its ‘good’ half year results, Munich Re has lowered its projection for ERGO International’s combined ratio for the full year by one per cent to 96%. Meanwhile, company forecasts for 2018 have seen little change in comparison with Q1 2018 figures. Munich Re is still expecting to post gross premiums written of €46bn to €49bn for 2018, and is keeping its forecast consolidated result in the range of €2.1bn to €2.5bn. These positive results come following a bumpy period last year as the January 1 renewal failed to meet Munich Re's expectations, with the increases secured far lower than previously forecasted. The company's reinsurance business ended 2017 having been hit with almost $4.4bn of natural catastrophe losses, causing the unit to register a combined ratio of 114.1% for the year, an increase of 18.4 percentage points compared with 2016. While Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria (HIM), the Mexico earthquakes and California wildfires were all severe events and took their toll on the re/insurance industry.

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