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Fitch: U.S. Property/Casualty Industry Investment Results Examined in New Report

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Longer term analysis of investment results for the U.S. property/casualty insurance industry shows weaker returns and greater volatility in recent years relative to past performance. The industry faces significant challenges in the future due to the prevailing low interest rate environment and economic uncertainty.

Fitch's new report 'Property/Casualty Insurer Investment Performance' examines long run statutory investment performance for the property/casualty insurance industry and its largest insurers. The report analyzes investment returns profits from investments in various ways over time. Comparing longer term performance reveals the tradeoffs companies make regarding returns and volatility of returns in their asset allocations. Companies exhibiting investment results comparable with industry or peer norms with lower return volatility are viewed positively in Fitch's rating process.

In spite of a general market value recovery on invested assets following the financial crisis, the property/casualty industry moved to more conservative investment strategies by reducing non-affiliated common stocks and below investment grade securities. However, given the importance of investment income to overall profitability, this current trend will slow capital formation and earnings performance will increasingly depend on the ability to improve underwriting performance.

The full report, 'Property/Casualty Insurer Investment Performance' is available at www.fitchratings.com under the following headers:

Sectors >> Financial Institutions >> Insurance >> Research

Additional information is available at www.fitchratings.com.

Applicable Criteria and Related Research: Property/Casualty Insurer Investment Performance
http://www.fitchratings.com/creditdesk/reports/report_frame.cfm?rpt_id=655951

ALL FITCH CREDIT RATINGS ARE SUBJECT TO CERTAIN LIMITATIONS AND DISCLAIMERS. PLEASE READ THESE LIMITATIONS AND DISCLAIMERS BY FOLLOWING THIS LINK: HTTP://FITCHRATINGS.COM/UNDERSTANDINGCREDITRATINGS. IN ADDITION, RATING DEFINITIONS AND THE TERMS OF USE OF SUCH RATINGS ARE AVAILABLE ON THE AGENCY'S PUBLIC WEBSITE WWW.FITCHRATINGS.COM. PUBLISHED RATINGS, CRITERIA AND METHODOLOGIES ARE AVAILABLE FROM THIS SITE AT ALL TIMES. FITCH'S CODE OF CONDUCT, CONFIDENTIALITY, CONFLICTS OF INTEREST, AFFILIATE FIREWALL, COMPLIANCE AND OTHER RELEVANT POLICIES AND PROCEDURES ARE ALSO AVAILABLE FROM THE 'CODE OF CONDUCT' SECTION OF THIS SITE.

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