RLI Corp. announced third-quarter operating earnings of $20.8 million, or 46 cents per share, up from $1.7 million, or 4 cents per share, in the prior-year period.
The S&P Capital IQ consensus normalized EPS estimate for the third quarter was 51 cents, with five analysts reporting.
The company had net earnings of $39.4 million, or 88 cents per share, in the third quarter, higher than $1.7 million, or 4 cents per share, in the prior-year quarter. Third-quarter net earnings included unrealized gains on equity securities and the related taxes. Unrealized gains, gross of tax, were $4.8 million during the quarter.
The company recorded $7.8 million of underwriting income in the third quarter, compared with a $14.9 million loss in the third quarter of 2017. Favorable development in prior years' loss reserves resulted in a $9.7 million net increase in underwriting income, which also suffered a $6.4 million net decrease due to losses from Hurricane Florence.
RLI notched gross premiums written of $239.1 million in the third quarter, compared with $220.4 million in the year-ago period. The company's net investment income also improved year over year in the third quarter to $16.3 million from $14.2 million.