Everest Re Group, Ltd. (RE - Free Report) delivered first-quarter 2019 operating net income per share of $6.91, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 9.7%. The bottom line improved 29.4% year over year.
Both its reinsurance and insurance businesses witnessed growth in the quarter.
Everest Re’s total operating revenues of $1.9 billion increased 5.4% year over year. However, the top line missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 4.8%.
Gross written premiums improved 10% year over year to $2.1 billion. The company’s worldwide reinsurance premiums rose 7% to $1.5 billion on the back of increased casualty and property pro-rata premium, increased shares on existing business and profitable new growth. Direct insurance premiums grew 18%.
Net investment income came in at $141 million in the quarter under review, up 1.9% year over year.
Total claims and expenses increased 1.6% to $1.6 billion, attributable to higher commission, brokerage, taxes and fees, other underwriting expenses and interest, fees and bond issue cost amortization expense.
Combined ratio improved 460 basis points (bps) to 88.7%. Excluding catastrophe loss, attritional combined ratio was 87.4%, a deterioration of 30 bps from the prior-year period.
Everest Re Group, Ltd. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise
Everest Re Group exited the quarter with total investments and cash of $19.2 billion, up 4.3% from 2018 end level. Shareholder equity at the end of the reported quarter increased 6.6% from 2018 end to $8.4 billion.
Book value per share came in at $206.68 as of Mar 31, 2019, up 6.3% from the 2018-end level.
Everest Re Group’s cash flow from operations was $459.8 million, up 135% year over year.
The company bought back shares worth $162 million in the quarter. The company still has 1.4 million shares remaining under its authorization.
Everest Re Group currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
Performance of Other P&C Insurers
Among other players from the same space that have reported first-quarter earnings so far, the bottom-line figures of The Travelers Companies Inc. (TRV - Free Report) The Progressive Corp. (PGR - Free Report) and RLI Corp. (RLI - Free Report) beat the respective Zacks Consensus Estimate.
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