2nd August 2020

Swiss Re confirms claims and reserves related to COVID-19 of $2.5bn-resulted in a net loss of $1.1bn but confident for the future

Swiss Re has published firast half results-highlights are: --Claims and reserves related to COVID-19 of $2.5bn across the Group resulted in a net loss of $1.1bn
-Group net income, excluding COVID-19 claims and reserves, of $865m
-Maintains very strong capital position, with Group Swiss Solvency Test(SST) ratio above the target level of 220%
-Property & Casualty Reinsurance (P&C Re) net loss of $519m excluding COVID-19 losses, net income and return on equity (ROE) of $646m and 14.9% respectively
-Successful July 2020 P&C Re renewals: premium volume up 6%; significant rate hardening in natural catastrophe business
-Life & Health Reinsurance (L&H Re) net income of $74m; excluding COVID-19 losses, net income and ROE of $516m and 12.4% respectively
-Corporate Solutions net loss of $301m; excluding COVID-19 losses, net income of £81m
-Successful closing of ReAssure sale to Phoenix Group Holdingsc represents a strategic milestone for the Group; -Life Capital reports ongoing premium growth in open book businesses
-Strong return on investments(ROI) of 3.2%, running yield 2.5%.
Swiss Re’s Group ceo Christian Mumenthaler comments “As the extraordinary crisis caused by COVID-19 unfolds across the globe, we share our sympathies with those who have suffered personal loss and financial uncertainty. Swiss Re is doing its part to facilitate recovery from this crisis, and we are working with many stakeholders around the world on improving resilience to future large systemic risks.
Based on current information and a prudent analysis of our businesses, and recognising the inherent uncertainty of the ongoing pandemic, we expect the claims and reserves we have booked in the first half of 2020 to cover the majority of our ultimate COVID-19 losses. While the impact on our earnings is significant, it remains manageable as our operations continue uninterrupted, all our businesses are performing well and our capital position allows us to take advantage of attractive opportunities in an improving market.
The vast majority of the Group’s COVID-19 losses represent incurred but not reported(IBNR) reserves. A range of factors relating to the pandemic, including future infection and mortality rates; the duration and effects of mitigation measures, including on business activity; the timing of an effective vaccine and/or alternative treatment solutions; legislative or regulatory efforts and the outcome of court and arbitration cases on coverage issues; the impact of government stimulus packages; and the severity and duration of recessionary impacts, may impact claims development in the coming quarters, either positively or negatively, relative to Swiss Re’s projections.
The Group’s SST ratio is above the target level of 220% as of 1st July 2020, including the impact from the sale of ReAssure and COVID-19 losses. Shareholders’ equity decreased to $27.9bn from USD 29.3bn at the end of 2019. Swiss Re’s book value was at $96.65 per share at the end of June 2020."

Swiss Re’s Group cfo John Dacey added “Although the COVID-19 crisis is still evolving, we took a prudent approach to build substantial reserves for the Group’s exposures already in the first half of this year. This gives us more certainty in the outlook for the remainder of 2020 and beyond. Thanks to our disciplined long-term approach to capital management and the decisive actions taken early in the crisis to protect our balance sheet, our capital position remains very strong.“

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