Auto Insurer Progressive Reports Q1 Profit Down 34%

April 9, 2008

Progressive Corp., one of the largest U.S. auto insurers, Wednesday said first-quarter profit fell 34 percent, as premiums declined.

Net income for the Mayfield Village, Ohio-based company dropped to $239.4 million, or 35 cents per share, from $363.5 million, or 49 cents per share, a year earlier.

Net premiums written fell 4 percent to $3.49 billion, while net premiums earned fell 3 percent to $3.39 billion. March policies in force in personal lines including autos rose 3 percent to 10.27 million, while commercial auto policies in force rose 6 percent to 545,400, the company said.

Analysts on average had expected profit of 29 cents per share on revenue of $3.52 billion, according to Reuters Estimates.

(Reporting by Jonathan Stempel, editing by Gerald E. McCormick)

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