Combined ratio of 98% at Skuld

Norway-based marine insurer Skuld booked a 98% combined ratio for the financial year to February 20th, helping it to its “16th year of positive underwriting results”.

The insurer and P&I Club recorded a bottom-line gain of $11m, down about 80% from the $58m recorded in financial year 2017. Gross earned premiums were $402m.

Skuld said that the year was characterized by “challenging conditions in global insurance and investment markets”.

Commercial marine liability underwriting contributed significantly to the overall result, with what was described as a “balanced” performance of Skuld’s mutual P&I liability business. It said that last year there had been “a handful” of large claims, but that overall claims frequency had remained low.

A high number of large claims submitted by Clubs to the International Group of P&I Clubs’ joint pool added significantly to Skuld’s 2018/19 costs. Skuld had two reported pool claims. It said that it continued to support the efficiency gains achieved through its membership of the International Group.

Investment returns for the year generated a further $3m. Skuld’s contingency reserves are now at $453m, a record high.

Skuld president and CEO Ståle Hansen noted that the P&I side of the business continued to grow, with a net increase in entered tonnage.

Skuld has now consolidated its P&I and commercial underwriting under the Skuld brand. Hansen said that the insurer remained “cautiously optimistic” for 2019/20.