Selective Insurance Q3 Profit Rises 79% to $33M

October 31, 2013

Selective Insurance Group of Branchville, N.J., reported Wednesday $32.653 million net income for its 2013 third quarter, a 78.7 percent increase from $18.274 million profit posted a year ago, as the company benefited from improved underwriting results.

Total net premiums written for the latest quarter were $492.748 million, up 9.4 percent from $450.518 million a year ago.

Net premiums written during the third quarter for standard commercial lines were $376.4 million, up 10.3 percent from $341.3 million a year ago; net premiums written for standard personal lines were $80.8 million, up 1.8 percent from $79.4 million last year; and net premiums written for excess and surplus lines were $35.5 million, a 19.1 percent increase from $29.8 million last year.

The GAAP combined ratio for the third quarter improved to 97.7 percent, compared to 99.8 percent last year.

Net investment income earned for the latest quarter was $32.457 million, up from $30.650 million a year ago. Net realized gains for the quarter was $13.431 million, in contrast to net realized losses of $1.088 million a year ago.

“We had a very strong quarter due to improvements in our underwriting operations, mainly from ongoing increases in overall renewal pure pricing,” said Chairman and CEO Gregory E. Murphy. “Contrary to industry rhetoric, we have not seen any indications that would substantiate industry-wide prices decreasing given loss trends and the low interest rate environment.”

“Our overall statutory combined ratio was 96.3 percent, down 2.1 points from a year ago, which is a reflection of the successful execution of our underwriting and claims strategies,” he said.

Murphy said that for this year’s third quarter, renewal pure price increases of 7.9 percent and stable retention of 83 percent were key to lowering the standard commercial lines statutory combined ratio, which was 95.6 percent, 3.2 points better than third quarter 2012.

“Our growth opportunities continue to improve with market conditions as standard commercial lines net premiums written grew 10 percent in the quarter,” said Murphy.

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