Insurance giant Zurich Financial Services has reported a ten per cent rise in net profit in 2011 despite responding to a series of natural disasters.
The Swiss group posted $3.75 billion (SFr3.46 billion) net profit, with turnover rising one per cent to $68.5 billion. However the fourth quarter profit of $557 million was 46 per cent lower than the same period in 2010.
“We delivered a good result in a year characterised by natural catastrophes, including devastating earthquakes in Japan and New Zealand as well as exceptional weather-related losses around the globe,” said CEO Martin Senn, adding that there had also been “challenging economic and market conditions”.
The company said “robust underwriting discipline” and a focus on profitability helped offset the effects of the “exceptional frequency” of disasters and weather-related problems.
The company has also decided to change its name to Zurich Insurance, a move being put before shareholders at the annual general meeting in March.
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