Reinsurer will continue to actively manage capital and remain disciplined in underwriting, insists CEO Currie

RenaissanceRe Holdings has reported $147.8m in first quarter operating income available to common shareholders compared to $186.7m in the first quarter of 2007.

Operating income excludes net realised losses on investments of $10.7m and net realised gains on investments of $4.1m in the first quarters of 2008 and 2007, respectively.

Net income available to common shareholders was $137.2m, compared to net income available to common shareholders of $190.8m for the same quarter of 2007.

Book value per common share increased to $42.14 at March 31, 2008, a 2.7% increase in the first quarter of 2008, compared to a 6.8% increase in the first quarter of 2007.

Neill Currie, CEO, commented: "I am pleased to report another solid quarter with an annualised operating ROE of over 21% and almost 3% growth in book value per share, inclusive of the impact of share buybacks. We continue to actively manage capital and returned over $239m to our shareholders through share buybacks during the quarter, bringing our total purchases to date to over $460m since the start of 2007."

Currie added, "We remain disciplined in our underwriting given current market conditions, while continuing to build out our franchise and capabilities through strategic hires, additional modeling capabilities and strategic new investments. These initiatives further enhance our ability to react quickly and grow our portfolio when the right opportunities present themselves."