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W.R. Berkley is rising sharply



W.R. Berkley Corp. on thursday reported third quarter net income of $ 261.3 million, an increase of 72.3% over the previous year.

Greenwich, Connecticut-based insurance company said after the markets closed that net premiums written during the quarter increased by 23.7% to $ 2.33 billion.

The overall share for the quarter improved to 90.4% from 93.7% during the third quarter of last year.

"By virtually every measure," Berkley "had a pretty attractive and healthy quarter," Rob Berkley, president and CEO, said in an interview with analysts. "It's a good moment for the P&C room, to be honest."

The exception is the workers' compensation market, "which continues to feel a bit of a growing headwind," he said.

Mr. Berkley said: "Obviously the property felt a bit pain during the quarter, but general market conditions are reasonably attractive."

"There is nothing to make us believe that the tide will turn anytime soon," he said.

Mr. Berkley said that social inflation is still a problem, and that "the reality of financial inflation clearly affects the cost of losses."

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