White Mountains Group Releases 1stQ Numbers; Sees Improvement Ahead

White Mountains Insurance Group, Ltd. ended the first quarter of 2002 with a fully converted tangible book value per share of $222, a $4 decrease from Dec. 31, 2001 including the $1 per share annual dividend paid in March 2002. The decrease resulted primarily from unrealized losses in White Mountains’ fixed income portfolios. Operating results improved significantly for all insurance and reinsurance segments compared to 2001, according to the company.

White Mountains reported comprehensive net income of $620 million for the quarter ended March 31, 2002. Comprehensive net income was break even for the comparable 2001 period. Comprehensive net income for the first quarter of 2002 includes the recognition of $660 million of deferred credits (net of goodwill) as a result of the adoption of new accounting standards. Excluding this amount, which does not affect tangible book value, White Mountains had a comprehensive net loss of $40 million, including a $25 million loss at OneBeacon, an $8 million profit at Folksamerica and $34 million in financing charges and purchase accounting adjustments related to the acquisition of OneBeacon.

“I am pleased with the turn-around at OneBeacon,” Chairman Jack Byrne commented. “We may well beat our schedule here. Folksamerica also has much improved results compared to last year. Montpelier shows signs that it will turn out to be a wonderful investment for us. You should ignore the $80 per share in income this quarter—we are required to write back in the deferred credits we wrote out last year. Below all the noise, the fundamentals in our two businesses are splendid. I am as optimistic as ever that the next few years will be fruitful ones for our shareholders.”