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  • Nationwide Reports Profitable First Quarter

    May 9, 2013 by Mark Williams, The Columbus Dispatch, Ohio

    May 07–Nationwide today said strength across its insurance and financial services businesses helped drive its first quarter operating profit 34 percent higher compared with a year ago.

    The Columbus-based insurer said it made $417 million for the period that ended March 31 compared with $274 million in the same period a year ago.

    The company’s property and casualty insurance operations had a net operating profit of $231 million, up $50 million from 2011.

    At the same time, the net operating profit at Nationwide’s financial services businesses increased by $76 million to $182 million. The year-ago figure was dragged down by a one-time charge related to customer-acquisition costs.

    Total operating revenue increased by nearly 12 percent to $5.8 billion for the quarter.

    “It was a good, solid first quarter,” said Mark Thresher, Nationwide’s CFO.

    The company’s insurance and financial service businesses provide balance to the company as does its operations throughout the country.

    “We continue to look to diversify our business by product and geography,” he said.

    Weather-related claims totaled $263 million in the quarter, up $62 million from the first quarter of 2012. Nationwide said the increase stemmed largely from a storm in March in the Southeast that included hail the size of softballs.

    Nationwide said premiums rose strongly in the quarter, helped by last year’s acquisition of Pennsylvania insurer Harleysville and gains from its commercial, specialty and agribusiness lines.

    “The Harleysville integration just continues to go extremely well,” he said.

    The company paid out $3.2 billion in claims, life insurance and other benefits to members and business partners during the quarter.

    Total financial services sales dropped by 5 percent from the year-ago period to $4.5 billion. Nationwide said it had slower sales in variable and fixed annuities, the result of changes that were made last year to manage risk and ensure profitable growth over the long term.

    Originally Posted at InsuranceNewsNet on May 8, 2013 by Mark Williams, The Columbus Dispatch, Ohio.

    Categories: Industry Articles
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