TT Club Announces Positive Financials for Sixth Consecutive Year
27 March 2008
TT Club today announced positive results for the year ended 31st December 2007 with net worth once more showing a year-on-year increase of 9% at USD 148.7 million, this for the sixth consecutive year. Total surplus and reserves rose to an unprecedented USD126.9 million, an increase on 2006 of some 7%, and gross premium income was steady at USD 205.6 million. Despite a softening insurance market the results were satisfactory and capped a year of both consolidation and progress for TT Club.
As in 2006, the twelve months ending December 2007 was largely 'disaster-free' for the insurance and reinsurance industry, although the long-term trends in natural and man-made catastrophes remain on the rise. A marked change however, was seen in the investment environment. In the first half of 2007 the industry saw strong returns from high interest rates and buoyant stock markets but this came to an abrupt halt in the third quarter when the effects of defaults in the US sub-prime sector spread to global financial markets.
Commenting on this particular aspect of the results, TT Club's Chief Executive, Paul Neagle said, "While the Club's investment portfolio is not directly exposed to losses arising from sub-prime debt, our conservative investment strategy has been, and remains, sensitive to changes in the interest rate environment." The net result of these various factors was that TT Club achieved a strong investment return in 2007 of USD 23.1 million, which was just below the record high of USD 25.2 million returned in 2006.
In terms of claims the Club's experience has been one of improvement in comparison with the previous year and when matched against expectations. "Concerns remain high over the rising tally of bodily injury and handling equipment claims," stated Neagle, "But our adverse experience of 2006 with its late surge in claims was not repeated in 2007." The Club remains vigilant in this respect however and continues to address the situation through detailed analysis of causal factors and the related loss prevention activity necessary to reduce risk and consequent exposure.
The Club is once more pleased with the achieved retention rate on renewals, which last year was over 90%. All of its major accounts renewed for 2008 and several for 2009 also. This creditable result came despite a concerted challenge to the Club's leading position in the North American chassis market and stiff competition from commercial providers of cover to the logistics sector.
While the financial result for 2007 is pleasing, Mr Neagle noted that in the year in which TT celebrates its 40th Anniversary (it was established on 6th June 1968) a number of challenges are presented. "Firstly, the increasing regulatory burden faced by the insurance industry will impact on operating costs which are already under inflationary pressure from a weak dollar and a shortage of skilled insurance professionals. Secondly, the Club seeks to expand its penetration of several sectors and will be focusing on bulk terminals, ground operations at airports and European logistics operations. Lastly, the Club will invest in new IT systems in order to maintain its leading position in the provision of claims handling and risk management service to Members".
Nevertheless, Club Chairman Sir David Thomson (who steps down in June after 25 years as TT Chairman) noted: "The Club can face the strategic and financial challenges of 2008/9 with confidence. We are financially strong with a very high level of solvency, are less dependent on reinsurance than ever before and have an excellent reputation as the market leader in our chosen sectors."
• Gross earned premiums - down 0.6% to US$205.6m ($206.8m in 2006)
• Net claims incurred - down 1.7% to US$119.1m (US$121.2m)
• Investment return including exchange gains/losses - down 8.3% to US$23.1m (US$25.2)
• Expenses - up 15.3% to US$34.6m (US$30.0m)
• Surplus for the year - up 38.9% to US$8.2m (US$5.9m)
• Total assets - up 11.9% to US$617.3m (US$551.7m)
• Surplus and reserves - up 6.9% to US$126.9m (US$118.7m)
• Capital resources (ECR= 100) 209% (202.6%)
• Combined ratio 107.8% (111%)
• Net worth - up 9% to US$148.7m (US$136.4m)
Note to Editors:
The TT Club is the international transport and logistics industry's leading provider of insurance and related risk management services. Established in 1968, the Club's membership comprises ship operators, ports and terminals, road, rail and airfreight operators, logistics companies and container lessors. As a mutual insurer, the Club exists to provide its policyholders with benefits, which include specialist underwriting expertise, a world-wide office network providing claims management services, and first class risk management and loss prevention advice. The full Annual Report and Financial Highlights can be reviewed or downloaded and printed from the home page of the web-site www.ttclub.com by accessing the menu item Publications/Annual reports.
For further information please contact:
Ian Lush, Marketing Director, TT Club
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7204 2642
Peter Owen, ISIS Communications
Tel: +44 (0) 1737 248300
A full archive of all TT Club news releases and photographs is available from the ISIS Communications Press Room at www.isiscomms.com