* Expects FY earnings $7.90-$8.00/shr vs est of $7.65
* Q3 operating earnings of $2.06/shr vs est of $1.88
* Q3 net earned premiums rise 2 pct to $3.02 bln
* Finnegan to remain CEO until 2016
Oct 24 Property and casualty insurer Chubb Corp
raised its earnings forecast for the full year after
reporting a better-than-expected rise in quarterly profit,
underpinned by higher rates and strong underwriting across all
Chubb raised its earnings forecast to $7.90-$8.00 per share
from $7.30-$7.50. Analysts on average expected the company to
earn $7.65, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Chubb also said John Finnegan, who has been at the helm
since 2002, will remain chief executive until 2016 rather than
2014, departing from its policy of retiring senior executives at
the age of 65.
Chubb's net profit rose to $541 million, or $2.10 per share,
for the third quarter ended Sept. 30, from $533 million, or
$1.98 per share, a year earlier.
On an operating basis, Chubb earned $2.06 per share, well
above the analysts' average estimates of $1.88 per share.
Net earned premiums rose about 2 percent to $3.02 billion.
Margins of U.S. insurers have benefited from improved
pricing after almost half a decade of softness.
The combined loss and expense ratio improved to 85.7 percent
from 86.3 percent a year earlier due to lower claims.
The combined ratio is an indicator of the total claims and
expenses incurred over net earned premiums. A ratio over 100
percent shows that the company has an underwriting loss.
Catastrophe losses before tax, however, rose to $92 million
in the third quarter from $17 million a year earlier.
According to UBS, U.S. insured catastrophe losses in the
quarter were about $2 billion, almost the same as a year earlier
and well below the 10-year average of $11 billion.
Low interest rates continued to chip away at Chubb's net
investment income, which fell about 6 percent to $342 million.
Rival Travelers Co Inc also reported
better-than-expected results earlier this week, helped by rising
rates and low claims.
Shares of the Warren, New Jersey-based insurer, which has a
market value of about $24 billion, closed at $92.94 on the New
York Stock Exchange on Thursday.