Chubb Posts Dip in 1st Quarter Profit

Chubb Corp, one of the largest U.S. business insurers, said that earnings fell 6.5 percent in the first quarter, as the value of policy sales fell moderately.

The Warren, New Jersey-based insurer posted net income of $664 million, or $1.77 a share, down from $710 million, or $1.71 a share, in the year-earlier quarter.

Chubb said operating earnings, which analysts use to measure performance because it excludes investments, were $620 million, or $1.63 a share, compared with $634 million, or $1.53 a share, in the year-ago quarter, on fewer shares outstanding.

Analysts, on average, had expected the insurer to earn $1.55 a share, according to Reuters Estimates.

Net written premiums declined 2 percent to $2.9 billion.

Investment income rose about 7 percent in the quarter to $410 million.

(Reporting by Lilla Zuill; editing by Jeffrey Benkoe, Richard Chang)