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Lloyd's managing agent helped drive American Financial's Q2 specialty results

American Financial Group Inc. co-President and co-CEO Carl Lindner is pleased with the progress Neon Underwriting Ltd. is making, he said in a call to discuss second-quarter earnings.

"Though with the high standards we have on underwriting profitability, that has a ways to go to please me even more long-term and get to the right long-term returns," he said of the London-based insurance underwriter.

Neon Underwriting is managing agent for Lloyd's of London Syndicate 2468. It is a member of the Great American Insurance Group, the members of which are subsidiaries of American Financial.

American Financial reported a 10% and 12% year-over-year increase in its specialty casualty group gross and net written premiums, respectively, which the company attributed to a change in Neon's mix of business to include more property business.

Neon exited certain lines of business between 2015 and 2016 that CFO Joseph Consolino said did not stand up to management's scrutiny as capable of making money in current markets. Since shrinking Neon's gross premium income by about a quarter during that time, he said the company is now starting to rebuild.

"It's being built in a way that's more diversified, in a way that looks more like the Lloyd's market and in a way where we think that we're going to have a lead-type position in those product lines," Consolino said.