Nationwide Mutual P/C Felt Pain of June Storms

By Mark Hollmer | August 14, 2014

Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co.’s property/casualty arm performed solidly in the 2014 second quarter, despite the Polar Vortex and major storm activity that hampered earnings over the first six months of the year.

The Ohio-based privately-held mutual insurer booked more than $4.7 billion in direct written premium across all of its major property/casualty businesses during the quarter, up from $4.48 billion over the same period in 2013. But the division’s net operating income came in at a loss – $134 million, to be exact. That compares to $113 million in property/casualty net operating income in the 2013 second quarter, the company said.

Nationwide noted it has a much higher market share in a number of Midwestern states slammed by extreme weather events in June.  On the other hand, the company said it saw property/casualty exposure growth, new business and rate adjustments through the first half of 2014. The company’s direct written premium grew 16 percent over the 2013 second quarter, it said.

For the first half of 2014, Nationwide’s property/casualty business generated $32 million in net operating income, down from $344 million in the first six months of 2013. The company blames the Polar Vortex in January and major storm activity for the results.

“We experienced significant weather activity during the first half of the year, which created hardship for many of our members,” Chief Financial Officer Mark Thresher said in a statement.

At the same time, Nationwide said its financial services sector boosted sales during the second quarter.

Nationwide said its net investment income reached $1.6 billion for the first half of 2014, flat versus the same period last year. At the same time, total assets grew to $189.7 billion, from the $183.2 billion they hit at the end of 2013.

Nationwide said its statutory surplus came in at $14.9 billion as of June 30, 2014. Total policyholders’ equity increased to $21.1 billion, up from $20 billion at the end of last year, the company said.

Nationwide’s personal and commercial property/casualty coverage comes through six operating brands: Nationwide Insurance, Allied Insurance, Scottsdale Insurance, Nationwide Agribusiness, Harleysville Insurance and Titan Insurance. Nationwide offers auto, home, life, commercial and retirement insurance and financial products in the U.S.

Source: Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co.

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