Profits at the Bâloise insurance group fell by nearly 11 per cent in the first half of the year to SFr234.6 million ($235 million).This content was published on August 27, 2009 - 09:52
This was down from SFr263.2 million a year earlier.
The results released on Thursday were within the range of analysts' expectations. Stocks were expected to open on the Swiss exchange three per cent higher at SFr98.15 a share.
"We are fully on track to meet our goal of becoming one of Europe's most profitable and fastest growing insurers by 2012," said Martin Strobel, CEO.
"In terms of our core insurance business we are in excellent shape, we are achieving growth in difficult times, and we are handling the challenges of the volatile investment markets extremely well."
Net premiums fell 1.7 per cent to SFr3.87 billion for the first half of 2009 against SFr3.93 billion a year ago. Non-life insurance premiums fell 2.6 per cent to SFr2.1 billion.
The combined ratio, the percentage of each premium dollar spent on claims and expenses, improved to 90.6 per cent. Anything less than 100 per cent reflects a profit.
Headquartered in Basel, the insurance group operates in Switzerland, Germany, Austria, Belgium, Luxembourg, Liechtenstein, Croatia and Serbia. It employs 9,400 people.
swissinfo.ch and agencies
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