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The art of underwriting: highly focused niche insurers are outperforming many of their larger, more diverse peers in four lines of commercial property/casualty insurance, according to a study by A.M. Best Co.

When it comes to profitable underwriting, commercial property/casualty insurers that outperformed their peers tend to have a one-track mind.

A.M. Best Co. studied four lines of commercial insurance--workers' compensation, fidelity and surety, medical malpractice and commercial auto--and found those companies that rose to the top in underwriting profitability often did so with a sharp, laser-like focus on a particular area of expertise.

Insurance companies can make money two ways: first, through the actual business of insurance, and secondly, through investments. It's common for insurers to break even or even lose money on their main business, insurance, but still be profitable based on their revenue from investments.

One measure of business profitability is combined ratio, which reflects losses and expenses as a percentage of premiums. A combined ratio less than 100 marks a profit. Over 100 equals an underwriting loss. The study examined companies who derive more than 50% of their premiums from one of the selected lines of insurance, and ranked them by their 10-year combined ratio.

The smaller, niche superstar companies that scored the best use various techniques. Some emphasize underwriting and take special care before adding a new client to their roster. Others focus on preventing the loss before it happens, paying close attention to educating clients. Still others put their muscle into handling claims to keep costs down.

It's likely that most people have never heard of many of the companies that trumped the competition. For instance, Yel Co. Insurance, a Miami-based privately held company, provides commercial-auto liability insurance to two fleets of taxis in South Florida. Yel Co. paid out only 37 cents in claims and expenses for every $1 of premium it took in over a decade. The industry average for commercial auto was 107.25, meaning the average commercial auto writer paid out $1.07 in expenses and claims for every $1 of premium taken in over a decade.

Global Surety & Insurance Co., an Omaha, Neb., surety and fidelity company, could have one of the best combined ratios of any company, anywhere: 6.36.That's not a typo. For every $1 of premium received, Global Surety only paid out 6.36 cents in claims, well below the industry average 10-year combined ratio of 98.23. True, Global Surety is a unique company in that it writes only contract surety business for its parent, construction contractor Kiewit Corp.

The results of both Yel Co. and Global Surety aren't typical, and neither is their business focus. Yet both demonstrate how knowing their business as an insider can help profitability. Both companies declined to be interviewed for this article, saying they're not looking for new business and don't want to share any of their secrets of success.

Other companies were proud to talk about their experience and how they overcame markets plagued by skyrocketing rates and shrinking availability. Several were forged in the fires of hard insurance markets, and ironically, have pulled ahead of their peers in terms of profitability, proving that what was once viewed as "too risky" by the general market can indeed be profitable--if insurers mind their business.

Focus, Focus, Focus

Companies can have an advantage by keeping a narrow focus, said Bruce D. Hale of Conning Research and Consulting Inc. "Sometimes you can have outstanding results because you have missed catastrophic weather. For instance, every personal and commercial insurer in Hawaii has made money hand over fist since Hurricane Iniki in 1992. A company focused on Hawaii would be great just because they haven't been hit," Hale said.

Companies also can excel if they take the time to really understand the risks.

MedAmerica Mutual Risk Retention Group, based in Walnut Creek, Calif., has a narrow focus that other insurers have shied away from: It provides medical malpractice insurance for emergency room doctors and nurses in California. It also whipped the competition, with a 10-year combined ratio of 89.9, the third lowest of any dedicated medical malpractice writer in the country. It's one of only four medical malpractice writers to turn an underwriting profit in the past 10 years.

"The combined ratio is truly the number an insurance company needs to focus on to measure their financial expertise," said Gloria H. Everett, MedAmerica chief executive officer. Like other profitable underwriters, MedAmerica is selective and doesn't take all applicants. "Before we will even issue a rate indication, not to mention a full quote, we ask what the company's motivation is in changing carriers. If they say price, it's a good indication that we aren't going to write it," she said.

MedAmerica emphasizes loss control and training, both for its staff and its insureds. The company sent its own staff to spend a day in an emergency room. "There's nothing more comforting to physicians than if you have an insurance person, or any service provider, really understand your business. That's what we have focused our energy on. We don't sit in an ivory tower and give advice that isn't appropriate to their business," Everett said.

For instance, after seeing a number of claims related to doctors having difficulty opening airways, the company developed a special kit with the tools needed for the task, and provided doctors with additional training.

MedAmerica could have expanded outside of its niche area of emergency care in California, but chose not to, Everett said. "We felt it wasn't our core competency. We weren't tempted. Working at a large company, one of the things I learned was that it's easy to get seduced by your own top line growth. Especially in med mal, we've seen a lot of top line growth that came back to bite us on the bottom line," she said.

See the Forest for the Trees

Maine Employers' Mutual Insurance Co. of Portland, Maine, is the workers' compensation insurer of last resort in the state. It was founded by the Maine government in 1993 when the state's workers' comp market was considered the worst in the nation. With forests covering 89% of the state, logging and forestry are major industries, and claims from those dangerous occupations were major contributors to the state's high loss ratio.

John Leonard, president and CEO since the company opened its doors, said MEMIC immediately focused on preventing losses from happening.

"The core operation is based around our commitment to workplace safety. We have nearly 40 certified safety professionals working in our territory on a daily basis," Leonard said. "We look more like a loss-control company than an insurance company."

Those safety professionals have all worked in the industries they now try to improve, he said. "For example, our construction industry safety professionals come out of that industry. They really understand and know the operations. They are not your traditional safety counselors with white shirts and clipboards," Leonard said.

Unlike other companies, MEMIC must take all comers. It doesn't have to keep all employers, however, and any who refuse to undergo MEMIC's safety training can be dropped. Even as the insurer of last resort, 65% of MEMIC's business stems from the voluntary market, and it writes about 70% of the commercial market in Maine, and expanded into New Hampshire in 2000.

MEMIC can tout its 89.7 combined ratio in the past 10 years as proof that its emphasis on loss prevention is paying off.

Don't Drop the Sandwich

Like MEMIC, Blood Centers Exchange, a risk retention group based in Overland Park, Kan., was formed in a hard market. It was the mid-1980s, and the blood-borne disease AIDS was making headlines nationwide. Insurers, fearful of the lawsuits related to the collection of blood, had second thoughts about providing liability coverage for blood collection centers.

"A lot of insurance companies said 'we're going to lose lots of money in claims, affecting financial results,'" said Alan Cable, chairman of the Blood Centers RRG. "Companies raised their rates, and stopped writing blood centers altogether. They thought the risk was too great."

The blood center where Cable worked saw its liability insurance rate jump about 350%. "Some blood centers even went without insurance. The bottom line is that those of us in the industry, we disagreed with the insurance companies. We don't think there's that much liability out there, knowing the business as we know it. In the end, we felt we should form our own insurance company," Cable said.

The RRG began doing business in 1993 by insuring 21 blood centers. It's since expanded to 43 blood centers, and has produced strong results. The RRG, with a 10-year combined ratio of 87.1, had the second best combined ratio of any dedicated medical malpractice writer in the country and has outperformed the medical malpractice industry, which had a combined ratio of 125.48 during that time. Remarkably, the Blood Centers Exchange has done that without a single employee. It relies on consultants to handle the insurance business, but is governed by its board of directors who are chosen from its member blood centers. Other blood center employees sit on committees to review everything from claims to underwriting, plus loss control and risk management.

"Everyone involved in the program is either from the blood industry or has been doing business with the blood industry for years," said Brad Ellis, who acts as manager of the RRG but works for the Haake Cos., a consulting firm. "The company has never needed to have its own employees. It may grow to the point where it decides to, but the committees within the company are very, very active."

For instance, an underwriting committee reviews all new applications from new blood centers who want to join the group.

"If the insured or potential insured has had regulatory shortcomings, we want to know how they've been dealt with. It's a highly regulated industry. We know what is expected of one another. If an applicant is having a problem with the FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration), we can see what the FDA has written them up for, and whether or not their response was adequate. We can encourage change, and if they choose to not adequately address the FDA's concerns, we may choose to no longer insure them," Cable said.

Ellis said: "If you really understand the industry, look at the claims experience of the applicant, and you'll have a good understanding as to whether the claims history will repeat itself."

The secret to making an underwriting profit is to know the industry, Cable said. "We are not trying to insure a risk that we do not fully understand," he said.

Also, Cable said it's important that the other insureds are equally committed to controlling claims.

"It's like when you are driving down the road, you will see people driving that you wouldn't want to share their liability for auto coverage. You see people whose lifestyle is a bit risky. We look at each other, the other insureds or applicants, and decide if we feel that they are going to do what they ought to do," Cable said. "We don't want them dropping their sandwich in the swimming pool we're sitting in."

Don't Underestimate Relationships

Smaller, more focused companies also are able to develop strong relationships, which can be an added benefit, Hale of Conning said. "Insurance is a people business. Those with strong relationships can really stand out, whether the relationship is with a customer group or regulators," he said.

Service Insurance Group of Austin, Texas, is one such company. "We keep very tight control, and relationships are very important to us," said Sandy Kohl, senior vice president of underwriting for Service Insurance.

Throughout most of its history, the company has concentrated on writing workers' comp insurance only for Texas-based auto dealerships. It's branched out recently to cover mom-and-pop type operations in Texas, but has several sister companies all related to meeting the insurance needs--including credit life, accident and health, and service warranties--for auto dealerships in Texas.

The company has bested every other dedicated workers' comp writer in the country by having the lowest 10-year combined ratio: 84.7. So while the rest of the industry, on average, was paying out $1.10 for every premium dollar taken in, Service Insurance was paying only 84.7 cents on the dollar.

"Prior to taking the risk, as well as after we have the risk, we have a loss control department that visits the insured or prospective insureds. They know what types of exposures there are. In dealerships, for instance, they are looking at things on the floor, like oil, that can cause floors to be slippery. They look for safety measures: Are mechanics using goggles? Back supports?" Kohl said.

Service Insurance has its own agents that sell directly to dealerships and also uses independent agents. It frequently meets with both types of agents to discuss business. Also, the loss-control department is frequently talking to the underwriters.

"The success is all of the departments working together and closely, and establishing a relationship with insureds and agents" Kohl said. Being small helps, she said. "I think the larger you become, the less relationship building you can do," she said.

Strong Leaders Show the Way

In addition to strong relationships, smaller companies can excel due to excellent management, Hale said. "The power or the value of a strong leader makes a highly concentrated impact in a smaller company, as compared to being watered down through various layers at a larger company," he said.

That could be the case with Charter Insurance Group, which writes business only in Massachusetts, a state with a tough regulatory environment. With a combined ratio of 86.5, the Boston-based company is the second most profitable workers' compensation underwriter, behind Service Insurance, for the past 10 years.

Linda J. Sallop, president of the company, and Mitchel I. Weisman, executive vice president, personally review just about every application and claim that come in the door.

Other companies may put the spotlight on their sales and marketing teams, but not Charter Insurance. "Other companies put their claims people in the basement, where there are no windows, nothing but files. Our claims department has the most beautiful space here," Sallop said.

Sallop and Weisman credit their employees with their success. "I think each and every individual here feels vested in what they do. They feel the results are in some way directly related to their performance," Weisman said.

"The state rates are below what they were in the 1980s," Sallop said. "The rates technically are very inadequate. When the rates go down, our competition lays off people. We invest more in them. We pay our people more than the average insurance company, in addition to other rewards."

For instance, the company caters hot lunches for its employees daily, and offers other perks, such as company dinners and a chance to work from home.

Maintaining relationships with clients also is important. Adjusters are assigned specific employers, and then handle every claim that comes from that employer. "Our adjusters do not sit at a desk waiting for claims to come in. They meet our accounts face-to-face, and establish the rapport we need to keep the employer doing business with us," Weisman said.

Key Points

* Some of the most profitable commercial underwriters are experts in the niche industries they serve.

* Other profitable underwriters credit their success to their loss-control efforts and their committment to safety programs.

* Others tout their efforts on claims and emphasize how important their claim managers and adjusters are.

Learn More

Charter Insurance Group

A.M. Best Company # 18396

Distribution: Independent Agents

Community Blood Centers Exchange

A.M, Best Company # 11569

Distribution: Direct

Maine Employers' Mutual Insurance Co.

A.M. Best Company # 11387

Distribution: Independent Agents

MedAmerica Mutual Risk Retention Group

A.M. Best Company # 11431

Distribution: Direct and Brokers

Service Insurance Group

A.M. Best Company # 18385

Distribution: Direct and Independent Agents

For ratings and other financial strength information about these companies, visit www.ambest.com.

Willard Reed and Henry Kane compiled data for this article from the A.M. Best Co. database.

CUTTING LOSSES: John Leonard, president of Maine Employers' Mutual Insurance Co., attributes the company's low combined ratio to its focus on loss control. The company requires employers in the logging industry to send their employees to a 40-hour training course, which includes hands-on training on how to safely cut down and move trees. The company hasn't had a serious loss-time injury in the wood products area since 1996, a year after it launched the course.

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]
Top Performing Underwriters Among Companies That Drive
50% or More of Their Premium From Specific Line

Medical Malpractice

Ranked by 10-year combined ratio
($ Thousands)
 2004
 Net 2004
 Premiums Combined
Group / Company Name AMB# Written Ratio

NCMIC Group 18579 61,318 99.30
Community Blood Centers' Exch RRG 11569 3,717 85.76
MedAmerica Mut RRG Inc 11431 8,637 95.24
Dentists Benefits Ins Co 10690 2,109 99.75
Natl Group 18249 60,461 103.05
PICA Group 18480 61,438 93.91
PIC WISCONSIN Group 18454 55,495 107.85
CA Healthcare Ins Co Inc, RRG 11230 13,879 99.70
Ophthalmic Mutual Ins Co (A RRG) 10844 36,059 90.12
MI Professional Ins Exch 10804 9,305 107.03

Entire Group (50% or more of premiums) $5,320,101 119.96

 5-Year 10-Year
 Combined Combined
Group / Company Name Ratio Ratio

NCMIC Group 87.09 78.56
Community Blood Centers' Exch RRG 86.24 87.12
MedAmerica Mut RRG Inc 98.41 89.90
Dentists Benefits Ins Co 92.47 99.25
Natl Group 103.83 100.82
PICA Group 98.14 101.61
PIC WISCONSIN Group 110.53 101.77
CA Healthcare Ins Co Inc, RRG 104.47 102.92
Ophthalmic Mutual Ins Co (A RRG) 103.07 102.94
MI Professional Ins Exch 104.54 104.05

Entire Group (50% or more of premiums) 129.22 121.83

Source: A.M. Best Co.

Medical Malpractice
10-Year Combined Ratio

(%)

NCMIC Group 78.56
Community Blood Centers' Exch (RRG) 87.12
MedAmerica Mut RRG Inc 89.90
Dentists Benefits Ins Co 99.25
Natl Group 100.82
PICA Group 101.61
PIC WISCONSIN Group 101.77
CA Healthcare Ins Co Inc, (RRG) 102.92
Ophthalmic Mutual Ins Co 102.94
MI Professional Ins Exch 104.05

Note: Table made from bar graph.

Workers' Compensation

Ranked by 10-year combined ratio
($ Thousands)

 2004
 Net 2004
 Premiums Combined
Group / Company Name AMB# Written Ratio

Service Ins Group 18385 $46,317 90.38
Charter Ins Group 18396 42,748 92.26
Memic Group 18524 176,063 101.78
United WI Ins Co 01932 67,787 89.81
Petroleum Cas Co 00769 4,910 102.42
Amerisafe Ins Group 18211 240,560 98.95
Accident Fund Ins Co of America 11770 488,533 88.56
New Mexico Mutual Group 18292 66,812 107.54
LA Workers' Comp Corp 11339 192,244 101.24
Meadowbrook Ins Group 18132 120,225 96.60

Entire Group (50% or more of
 premiums) $16,593,763 98.36

 5-Year 10-Year
 Combined Combined
Group / Company Name Ratio Ratio

Service Ins Group 89.83 84.77
Charter Ins Group 91.92 86.48
Memic Group 98.79 89.70
United WI Ins Co 92.78 92.51
Petroleum Cas Co 93.06 93.44
Amerisafe Ins Group 97.74 94.12
Accident Fund Ins Co of America 95.47 94.44
New Mexico Mutual Group 111.63 95.42
LA Workers' Comp Corp 96.10 97.29
Meadowbrook Ins Group 102.09 98.51

Entire Group (50% or more of
 premiums) 109.12 111.94

Source: A.M. Best Co.

Workers' Compensation
10-Year Combined Ratio
(%)

Service Ins Group 84.77
Charter Ins Group 86.48
Memic Group 89.70
United WI Ins Co 92.51
Petroleum Cas Co 93.44
Amerisafe Ins Group 94.12
Accident Fund Ins Co of America 94.44
New Mexico Mutual Group 95.42
LA Workers' Comp Corp 97.29
Meadowbrook Ins Group 98.51

Note: Table made from bar graph.

Fidelity and Surety

Ranked by 10-year combined ratio
($ Thousands)

 2004
 Net 2004
 Premiums Combined
Group / Company Name AMB# Written Ratio

Global Surety & Ins Co 04156 $12,365 5.97
Lexon Ins Co 00743 29,782 55.00
Bond Safeguard Ins Co 03507 11,220 48.25
Machinery Ins, Assessable Mut
 Insurer 10638 235 53.13
HICA Hldg Group 18285 147,990 54.83
Universal Surety Group 00937 2,728 53.47
Western Ins Co 12055 1,650 58.25
Insurors Indemnity Cos 18609 823 81.54
USIC Group 18655 11,138 96.05
Amer Surety Co 02557 7,434 81.80

Entire Group (50% or more of
 premiums) $559,396 73.92

 5-Year 10-Year
 Combined Combined
Group / Company Name Ratio Ratio

Global Surety & Ins Co 5.49 6.36
Lexon Ins Co 60.61 55.06
Bond Safeguard Ins Co 62.15 64.60
Machinery Ins, Assessable Mut
 Insurer 67.31 71.41
HICA Hldg Group 65.14 71.93
Universal Surety Group 57.63 72.37
Western Ins Co 74.34 74.23
Insurors Indemnity Cos 75.43 75.10
USIC Group 79.66 78.96
Amer Surety Co 87.31 85.77

Entire Group (50% or more of
 premiums) 89.76 90.30

Source: A.M. Best Co.

Commercial Auto

Ranked by 10-year combined ratio
($ Thousands)

 2004
 Net 2004
 Premiums Combined
Group / Company Name AMB# Written Ratio

Yel Co Ins 11343 $1,198 0.75
Pathfinder Ins Co 00381 1,860 26.72
Daily Underwriters of America 02721 7,471 60.70
Transguard Ins Co of America 00327 99,468 102.77
Amalgamated Cas Ins Co 00117 4,524 97.46
State Natl Cos 18019 45,672 98.41
Gulf States Ins Co 10838 6,005 86.33
Canal Group 03930 385,593 100.19
Lancer Ins Co 02641 61,479 91.99
MAPFRE USA 18116 $6,768 94.38

Entire Group (50% or more of
 premiums) $1,398,527 99.63

 5-Year 10-Year
 Combined Combined
Group / Company Name Ratio Ratio

Yel Co Ins 15.91 37.80
Pathfinder Ins Co 29.86 52.45
Daily Underwriters of America 69.22 69.68
Transguard Ins Co of America 86.54 85.78
Amalgamated Cas Ins Co 90.10 87.65
State Natl Cos 94.02 93.08
Gulf States Ins Co 97.79 98.04
Canal Group 99.81 98.70
Lancer Ins Co 98.19 99.53
MAPFRE USA 101.52 99.90

Entire Group (50% or more of
 premiums) 100.35 101.76

Source: A.M. Best Co.

Medical Malpractice

Ranked by Net Premiums Written ($Thousands)

 2004
 Net 2004
 Premiums Combined
Group / Company Name AMB# Written Ratio

MLMIC Group 18439 $643,920 204.76
GE Ins Solutions Group 18572 533,159 98.94
ProAssurance Group 18559 514,798 100.68
Doctors Co Ins Group 18083 476,229 96.69
Health Care Indemnity Inc 03701 370,101 100.05
CNA Ins Cos 18313 347,090 104.67
Norcal Group 18539 285,727 109.40
ProMutual Group 18359 275,954 115.05
Mag Mutual Group 18635 253,056 105.77
ISMIE Mutual Group 18644 223,613 114.02

Entire Industry Total and Averages $7,386,266 112.35

 5-Year 10-Year
 Combined Combined
Group / Company Name Ratio Ratio

MLMIC Group 165.22 131.85
GE Ins Solutions Group 105.36 105.52
ProAssurance Group 116.85 111.55
Doctors Co Ins Group 110.48 112.07
Health Care Indemnity Inc 110.71 114.55
CNA Ins Cos 146.96 138.11
Norcal Group 121.83 128.19
ProMutual Group 153.76 141.53
Mag Mutual Group 115.90 115.39
ISMIE Mutual Group 125.94 128.25

Entire Industry Total and Averages 135.54 125.48

Source: A.M. Best Co.

Workers' Compensation

Ranked by Net Premiums Written ($Thousands)

 2004
 Net 2004
 Premiums Combined
Group / Company Name AMB# Written Ratio

State Comp Ins Fund CA 04028 $7,949,665 95.62
Liberty Mutual Ins Cos 00060 3,684,035 108.17
St. Paul Travelers Group 18647 2,162,999 100.41
Hartford Ins Group 00048 1,920,776 101.77
Zurich Finl Svcs NA Group 18549 1,266,589 113.86
CNA Ins Cos 18313 1,229,265 123.15
Zenith Natl Ins Group 03020 949,188 87.53
Ace INA Group 18498 921,904 82.22
Chubb Group of Ins Cos 00012 898,988 92.87
W.R. Berkley Group 04655 807,348 102.65
W.R. Berkley Group

Entire Industry Total and Averages $40,049,097 104.90

 5-Year 10-Year
 Combined Combined
Group / Company Name Ratio Ratio

State Comp Ins Fund CA 106.69 112.89
Liberty Mutual Ins Cos 114.00 112.48
St. Paul Travelers Group 98.47 104.91
Hartford Ins Group 107.80 107.39
Zurich Finl Svcs NA Group 105.65 105.03
CNA Ins Cos 135.64 111.20
Zenith Natl Ins Group 100.58 105.97
Ace INA Group 93.81 109.12
Chubb Group of Ins Cos 95.81 98.92
W.R. Berkley Group 102.02 100.60
W.R. Berkley Group

Entire Industry Total and Averages 112.49 109.91

Source: A.M. Best Co.

Fidelity and Surety

Ranked by Net Premiums Written ($Thousands)

 2004
 Net 2004
 Premiums Combined
Group / Company Name AMB# Written Ratio

St. Paul Travelers Group 18647 $873,386 207.31
Chubb Group of Ins Cos 00012 523,682 63.82
CNA Ins Cos 18313 354,314 64.60
Zurich Finl Svcs NA Group 18549 301,620 130.37
Safeco Ins Cos 00078 232,467 76.51
Berkshire Hathaway Ins 00811 214,857 22.33
Hartford Ins Group 00048 190,510 85.58
HICA Hldg Group 18285 147,990 54.83
Liberty Mutual Ins Cos 00060 146,845 117.90
Great Amer P&C Ins Group 04835 112,375 92.92

Entire Industry Total and Averages $4,707,930 111.21

 5-Year 10-Year
 Combined Combined
Group / Company Name Ratio Ratio

St. Paul Travelers Group 123.74 106.63
Chubb Group of Ins Cos 75.85 80.94
CNA Ins Cos 93.01 86.49
Zurich Finl Svcs NA Group 111.33 101.22
Safeco Ins Cos 79.94 78.55
Berkshire Hathaway Ins 43.17 51.31
Hartford Ins Group 102.08 97.73
HICA Hldg Group 65.14 71.93
Liberty Mutual Ins Cos 131.18 115.18
Great Amer P&C Ins Group 101.16 93.15

Entire Industry Total and Averages 107.96 98.23

Source: A.M. Best Co.

Fidelity and Surety
10-Year Combined Ratio
(%)

Global Surety & Ins Co 6.36
Lexon Ins Co 55.06
Bond Safeguard Ins Co 64.60
Machinery Ins, Assessable Mut Insurer 71.41
HICA Hldg Group 71.93
Universal Surety Group 72.37
Western Ins Co 74.23
Insurors Indemnity Cos 75.10
USIC Group 78.96
Amer Surety Co 85.77

Note: Table made from bar graph.

Commercial Auto

Ranked by Net Premiums Written ($Thousands)

 2004
 Net 2004
 Premiums Combined
Group / Company Name AMB# Written Ratio

St. Paul Travelers Group 18647 $2,296,121 90.62
Progressive Ins Group 00780 1,613,978 82.35
Zurich Finl Svcs NA Group 18549 1,159,817 84.61
State Farm Group 00088 1,072,717 92.30
Liberty Mutual Ins Cos 00060 1,051,654 95.41
Nationwide Group 05987 834,786 89.10
CNA Ins Cos 18313 833,112 98.14
Hartford Ins Group 00048 731,851 95.34
Auto-Owners Ins Group 04354 703,712 84.49
Allstate Ins Group 00008 629,434 96.34

Entire Industry Total and Averages $25,556,010 92.18

 5-Year 10-Year
 Combined Combined
Group / Company Name Ratio Ratio

St. Paul Travelers Group 101.09 104.88
Progressive Ins Group 88.04 90.22
Zurich Finl Svcs NA Group 96.65 106.40
State Farm Group 102.96 100.62
Liberty Mutual Ins Cos 116.15 119.83
Nationwide Group 99.77 105.77
CNA Ins Cos 103.61 106.71
Hartford Ins Group 101.85 104.28
Auto-Owners Ins Group 95.70 98.70
Allstate Ins Group 101.45 103.32

Entire Industry Total and Averages 103.36 107.25

Source: A.M. Best Co.

Commercial Auto
10-Year Combined Ratio
(%)

Yel Co Ins 37.80
Pathfinder Ins Co 52.45
Daily Underwriters of America 69.68
Transguard Ins Co of America 85.78
Amalgamated Cas Ins Co 87.65
State Natl Cos 93.08
Gulf States Ins Co 98.70
Lancer Ins Co 99.53
MAPFRE USA 99.90

Note: Table made from bar graph.
COPYRIGHT 2005 A.M. Best Company, Inc.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2005, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

Article Details
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Title Annotation:underwriting profit
Author:Green, Meg
Publication:Best's Review
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Nov 1, 2005
Words:4743
Previous Article:Best's rating changes.
Next Article:Cash vs. replacement: U.K. homeowners insurers are doling out replacement goods instead of cash settlements on claims, while U.S. insurers are doing...
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