Swiss Re Q2 Profit $802 Million; but Misses Estimates on Drop at Life Unit

By | August 6, 2014

Swiss Re Ltd., the world’s second- biggest reinsurer, reported second-quarter profit that missed analysts estimates, as earnings from life and health insurance declined.

Net income increased to $802 million from $786 million a year earlier, the Zurich-based reinsurer said in an e-mailed statement today. Swiss Re was expected to earn $898 million, according to the average estimate of 12 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

“The non-life result was a bit modest and life was disappointing after some one-offs,” Stefan Schuermann, a Zurich-based analyst with Vontobel Holding AG, who has a buy rating on the stock, said by telephone. “The market will not like it.”

Net income at the life and health unit fell to $48 million from $154 million a year earlier. Profit for the non-life business rose 22 percent to $553 million as premiums climbed 12 percent.

Swiss Re has fallen 6 percent to 77.10 Swiss francs in Zurich trading this year. Munich Re, the world’s biggest reinsurer, dropped 3.7 percent while the 33-company Bloomberg Europe 500 Insurance Index has fallen 0.3 percent.

The combined ratio, a measure of profitability in property and casualty reinsurance, improved to 93.5 percent compared with 101.1 percent a year earlier, when it was pushed up by higher- than-expected claims from catastrophes and lower reserve releases.

Swiss Re said its quarterly return on investments increased to 4.1 percent from 3.8 percent.