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Aon's organic growth; China Re leads Chaucer race; JLT plans for no-deal Brexit


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Aon's organic growth; China Re leads Chaucer race; JLT plans for no-deal Brexit

The insurance results season continues, with Aon PLC today reporting second-quarter net income attributable to shareholders of $48 million, or 20 cents per share, compared with $769 million, or $2.93 per share, in the second quarter of 2017, when it booked a sizable gain from the divestiture of its outsourcing business. Total second-quarter revenue rose to $2.56 billion from $2.37 billion, with organic revenue growth reaching 5%.

Aflac Inc. yesterday reported second-quarter adjusted earnings of $835 million, or $1.07 per share, versus $731 million, or 92 cents per share, a year earlier. Total revenues increased by 3.0% year over year to $5.59 billion from $5.43 billion, and the company raised full-year adjusted EPS guidance to a range of $3.90 to $4.06, from $3.72 to $3.88.

The Hartford Financial Services Group Inc. reported second-quarter net income of $582 million, or $1.60 per share, compared with a net loss of $40 million, or a loss of 11 cents per share, in the prior-year quarter, which included a $488 million pensions settlement charge.

Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. reported 5.3% second-quarter growth in organic commissions, fees, supplemental commissions and contingent commissions. Second-quarter total revenues were $1.66 billion, up from $1.49 billion, the previous year. CEO Pat Gallagher Jr. said the company's M&A-focused growth strategy will continue, fueled by an "unquenchable supply" of acquirable brokers.

Click here to read a roundup of earnings reported by insurers and brokers covered by S&P Global Market Intelligence.

In other M&A news, China Reinsurance (Group) Corp. has made the highest bid for Hanover Insurance Group Inc.'s international specialty insurance business, Chaucer, The Insurance Insider reported. The talks between the two companies have advanced, but there is no surety that the deal would be made.

Belgium insurer Ageas SA/NV has not made any move to approach Fosun International regarding its potential acquisition, CEO Bart de Smet told Reuters.

Tokio Marine HCC named Susan Rivera CEO, effective Sept. 1. She will replace Christopher Williams, who is set to become managing executive officer and co-head of international business for Tokio Marine Holdings Inc.

Anne Richards will step down as CEO of U.K.-based Prudential PLC's M&G Investment Management Ltd., effective Aug. 10, to become CEO of asset manager Fidelity International.

Raytheon Co. and Prudential Insurance Co. of America sealed a group annuity contract transferring $923 million in pension obligations to the Prudential Financial Inc. unit.

U.K.'s Jardine Lloyd Thompson Group PLC CEO Dominic Burke said the British insurance broker is preparing for the possibility of the U.K. departing the European Union without a Brexit deal, Reuters reported.

Bermudian reinsurer RenaissanceRe Holdings Ltd. has increased the size of its collateralized reinsurance and retrocession vehicle, Upsilon, to more than $1 billion, Artemis reported.

Florida-headquartered Universal Insurance Holdings Inc. is $5 million over budget for second-quarter catastrophe losses, Artemis reported. The increase in losses is attributable to the volcanic eruption in Hawaii and other significant weather events.

Nigeria's National Insurance Commission tripled the minimum capital requirement for the country's insurers, Bloomberg News reported, citing Rasaaq Salami, a spokesman for the regulator. Beginning Jan. 1, 2019, the minimum capital requirement for life insurers will increase to 6 billion naira (about US$16.6 million) from 2 billion naira, while that for nonlife insurers will rise to 9 billion naira from 3 billion naira.

The Insurance Association of China has drafted an industry self-discipline convention on property and casualty insurance products, Shanghai Securities News reported. The draft guidance asks P&C insurers to comply with industry regulations when developing products and to participate in improving industry standardization levels.

Now featured on S&P Global Market Intelligence

Lloyd's of London profit crackdown will lead to pricing 'disconnect': JLT CEO: CEO Dominic Burke praised efforts to improve performance at Lloyd's but said his company needs to be vigilant in tracking the resulting differences between Lloyd's and the wider market.

AXIS Capital CEO sees widespread improvement in pricing: President and CEO Albert Benchimol expressed optimism about market conditions despite some problems with excess capacity.

Merck & Co. raises FY'18 outlook; AstraZeneca drops thyroid cancer drug trial: Merck & Co. reported a year-over-year increase in second-quarter non-GAAP net income to $2.85 billion, or $1.06 per share; and AstraZeneca is dropping a late-stage study for its experimental cancer drug selumetinib.

Financial news in other parts of the world

Asia-Pacific: Ex-China banking regulator sentenced to prison; SBI Life Q1 profit rises

Europe: Sabadell profit down after TSB woes; former Julius Bär exec arrested

Middle East and Africa: More Gulf banks post Q2; Nedbank sees higher results; Greek bank to exit Egypt

The day ahead

Early morning futures indicators pointed to a higher opening for the U.S. market.

In Asia, the Hang Seng increased 0.08% to 28,804.28, and the Nikkei 225 rose 0.56% to 22,712.75.

In Europe, around midday, the FTSE 100 was up 0.58% to 7,707.50, and the Euronext 100 was up 0.24% to 1,078.64

Click here to read about today's financial markets, setting out the factors driving stocks, bonds and currencies around the world ahead of the New York open.

On the macro front

The GDP report, the consumer sentiment report and the Baker-Hughes Rig Count report are due out today.

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