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Financial services and insurance, editors' picks

Editors' picks for the weekinclude a look at diverging trends in subprime auto loan production and marketshare for top homeowners insurers as of Dec. 31, 2015.

1.More geographic expansion aheadfor Progressive's property insurance business

Therecent focus on bottom-line results in Progressive Corp.'s property business may serve aslittle more than a passing diversion to the direct and indirect top-line growthopportunities associated with a group of companies that just completed theirfirst full year under the Mayfield Village, Ohio-based insurer's control.

2.Wunderlich's former co-head offixed income now with First Empire

S.J.Guzzo, former co-head of fixed-income capital markets at , joinedFirst Empire SecuritiesInc. as a senior vice president.

3.Subprime auto origination trendsvary by lender

Aselection of first-quarter earnings reports shows diverging trends in subprimeauto loan production in a competitive and closely watched marketplace.

4.New York Life raises flag onpotential reserve shortfall under PBR

Amajor insurer has stepped forward to express concerns with reserving methodscontained within a new life insurance reserving framework expected to beimplemented at the beginning of 2017.

5.Homeowners industry sees YOYgrowth in direct premiums written in '15

Directpremiums written growth slowed in the homeowners business in 2015 compared withpast years, but the industry recorded a third consecutive year of favorableunderwriting results in the line.