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Stock Strategist Industry Reports

Reinsurers Come through the Financial Storm

Better times could be around the corner.

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The last five years provided a strenuous set of tests for property and casualty reinsurance companies. Reinsurers provide insurance to insurers, and like all insurers, they can make (or lose) money in two basic ways. They can underwrite well or poorly, and they can invest well or poorly.

Since 2004, we've had three hard catastrophe loss years (2004, 2005, and 2008), coupled with the most severe trial for investment portfolios and capital strength since the Great Depression. Surveying the landscape today, on the heels of the financial crisis, we are left with the impression that the results for the reinsurers we follow could have been a lot worse.

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Bill Bergman does not own shares in any of the securities mentioned above. Find out about Morningstar’s editorial policies.