GWP down to $254.1m from $274.8m

Bermuda-based reinsurer Montpelier Re has reported a net loss of $104.3m for the first quarter of 2011, down from a profit of $9.9m in the first quarter of 2010.

The first quarter results include $200m of catastrophe losses net of reinsurance and reinstatement premiums including:

  • March Tohoku earthquake in Japan - $130m
  • February New Zealand earthquake - $65m
  • January Australian Floods -$5m

Montpelier Re’s president and chief executive Christopher Harris, said, “The industry faced a series of catastrophe losses during the quarter, and we were pleased our portfolio performed as we expected for events of this magnitude.”

Montpelier Re’s combined ratio for the quarter rose 55 percentage points to 179%, up from 124% for the same period last year.

The reinsurer reduced its underwriting portfolio in the first quarter with gross written premiums down to $254.1m from $274.8m in the first quarter of 2010.

Despite the losses, Harris is optimistic about pricing for the remainder of 2011. “Based on the accumulation of worldwide catastrophe losses over the past five quarters and early signs of increased demand from clients, we are more optimistic about pricing prospects for the remainder of this year and into 2012, particularly within the property catastrophe segment.”