Travelers Profit Rises 17% on Investments, Margin Expansion

Travelers, the only property/casualty insurer in the Dow Jones Industrial Average, said profit climbed to a record in the first quarter on investments and expanding margins.

INN Breaking News, April 22, 2014

Noah Buhayar

(Bloomberg) -- Travelers Cos., the only property/casualty insurer in the Dow Jones Industrial Average, said profit climbed 17 percent to a record in the first quarter on investments and expanding margins.

Net income rose to $1.05 billion, or $2.95 a share, from $896 million, or $2.33, a year earlier, the New York-based company said today in a statement. Operating profit was also $2.95 a share, beating the $2.16 average estimate of 26 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

Chief Executive Officer Jay Fishman, 61, has been selectively raising insurance rates to boost profitability as claims from storms pressure returns. He’s also been cutting costs to help increase the company’s return on equity, which climbed to about 17 percent in the first quarter from 14 percent a year earlier.

“Our very deep agent, broker and customer relationships, highly segmented pricing strategies and expense discipline continued to deliver strong and improving underwriting results,” Fishman said in the statement. Travelers is “well positioned to deliver on our goal of producing a mid-teens operating return on equity over time.”

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