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Scor reports 99.4% Q3 combined ratio as reserve release helps offset cat losses

Scor SE's consolidated net income group share increased 44.4% to €115 million in the third quarter from €80 million a year earlier.

EPS rose year over year to 62 cents from 43 cents. Annualized return on equity for the quarter was 7.5%, compared to 5.4% a year ago.

Gross written premiums grew to €4.05 billion from €3.80 billion, as property and casualty gross written premiums rose to €1.82 billion from €1.57 billion. Life gross written premiums dipped to €2.22 billion from €2.23 billion.

Investment income jumped 27.8% to €187 million from €146 million.

The P&C net combined ratio weakened to 99.4% from the year-ago 98.0%, as Scor said it sustained a natural catastrophe impact of 12.0% in the third quarter. This mainly came from Hurricane Dorian, accounting for €92 million of losses net of retrocession, and Typhoon Faxai, at €89 million net of retrocession.

Scor also said it made a reserve release of €60 million, pretax, in the third quarter, partially offsetting the impact of high natural catastrophes and man-made losses. The year-to-date catastrophe ratio stands at 7.6%, compared to a budget assumption of 7%.

The life technical margin was 7.3%, compared to 7.2% a year earlier.

The estimated solvency ratio stood at 203% on Sept. 30, which the French reinsurer said is in the optimal solvency range of 185% to 220% in its strategic plan. Scor noted that capital generation is positive, and that a reduction in solvency was notably driven by the decrease in interest rates since the beginning of the year.

Through three quarters, the company's consolidated net income group share was up 17.3% to €401 million from €342 million. Annualized ROE for the period was 8.8%, versus 7.6% a year ago.

Scor shares were up about 3% in early trading Oct. 24.