Canadian Underwriter

Co-operators ends 2002 in the red

February 28, 2003   by Canadian Underwriter

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Auto claims continued to plague Co-operators General Insurance Company (TSX: CCS.PR.A) as it wound up 2002 with a fourth quarter loss of $2.5 million. This compares with a loss of $2.6 million for the last quarter of 2001.
Year-on-year, gross written premiums grew 5.7% for the quarter to $442 million versus $418 million for fourth quarter 2001. The claims ratio similarly improved to 78.2% from 80.7% the year prior. The company’s combined ratio came in at 106.4% for the quarter, versus 110.7% a year earlier.
For the full year 2002, the company suffered a net loss of $1.14 million, of $0.48 per share, a vast improvement over the $10.8 million loss, equal to $0.97 per share, suffered in 2001. Gross written premiums for the year came in at $1.73 billion, versus $1.63 billion a year earlier, an increase of 6.2%.
However, investment income was down to $118.8 million in 2002, compared with $142.3 million a year prior.
“Despite the fact that serious personal injury claims costs continue at high levels in the auto insurance industry, Co-operators General had a year of very significant achievements including major advances in the profitability of its broker distribution channel,” says CEO and president Kathy Bardswick. “We are looking forward to continued improvement in 2003 and are in a solid position to increase future profitability and growth.”

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