Profits slump for insurance market Lloyd's of London despite growth in gross written premiums, as chief executive Inga Beale speaks out about terrorism

Hayley Kirton
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"Protection from cyber-attacks, terrorism and climate change are needed now more than ever," said Beale (Source: Getty)

Insurance market Lloyd's of London today announced that its profits had dipped slightly during 2015, although it had increased its gross written premiums.

Lloyd's revealed pre-tax profits of £2.1bn, down compared with £3bn the year before, although the company said that it felt its profits remained significant despite a fall in returns on investments and increased pressures on pricing.

Meanwhile, gross written premiums increased to £26.7bn, up six per cent compared with £25.3bn the year before.

"Lloyd's is pursuing its strategy to deliver risk solutions to a fast moving world," said Inga Beale, chief executive of Lloyd's. "Business looks to the Lloyd's market to underwrite policies too complex for others to handle. Protection from cyber-attacks, terrorism and climate change are needed now more than ever."

John Nelson, chairman of Lloyd's, added in his statement: "It is already clear that the conditions we faced in 2015 are continuing into 2016. Uncertainty over the United Kingdom's membership of the European Union adds an unsettling ingredient to the mix. We believe strongly that continued membership would be the better outcome for Lloyd's and the businesses in our market but we are preparing contingency plans in the event of an exit."

During 2015, Lloyd's opened a specialist underwriting platform in Dubai and its first office in Mexico. The company also received approval from the Prudential Regulatory Authority for its internal model for Solvency II in December.

Lloyd's currently has strong ratings from major ratings agencies, including an AA- rating from Fitch and an A+ rating from Standard & Poor's. Lloyd's also insures 63 per cent of the FTSE 250 and 65 per cent of the Fortune 500.

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