Travelers Reports 17% Profit Hike in 1Q

Travelers Companies Inc. reported a 17 percent rise in first-quarter profit, helped by higher underwriting gains and an increase in net investment income.

Net income rose to $1.05 billion for the quarter ended March 31, from $896 million a year earlier.

Net investment income rose about 10 percent to $736 million as Travelers benefited from strong returns in its non-fixed income portfolio.

Underwriting gains jumped about 32 percent to $791 million.

Net written premiums rose about 5 percent to $5.87 billion, while total revenue rose 6 percent to $6.71 billion.

“Our very deep agent, broker and customer relationships, highly segmented pricing strategies and expense discipline continued to deliver strong and improving underwriting results,” Chief Executive Jay Fishman said in a statement.

Pre-tax catastrophe losses, net of reinsurance, rose about 50 percent to $149 million.

Travelers’ combined ratio fell to 88.2 percent in the quarter from 90.8 percent.

(Reporting by Avik Das in Bangalore; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty and Prateek Chatterjee)