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Industry premium climbs to $45 billion

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General insurers recorded gross earned premium of $45.3 billion for the year to September 30, according to the latest Australian Prudential Regulation Authority statistics.

This was a slight increase on the previous year’s figure of $44.1 billion.

Outwards reinsurance expense totalled $13.3 billion, leaving net earned premium of $32.1 billion.

Of this figure, insurers from large groups accounted for 67.8%, personal lines insurers 14.4%, commercial lines insurers 9.8%, reinsurers 5.2% and lenders’ mortgage insurers 2.2%.

Gross incurred claims for the year totalled $33.2 billion, up from $31.5 billion, with the rise due to “increases in the short-tail property classes of business and inwards reinsurance”.

“In both cases this was largely driven by increased gross incurred claims from catastrophes, including Cyclone Debbie in the March quarter,” the regulator said.

The net loss ratio for the industry was 63%, compared with 66% the previous year.

Investment income dropped to $2 billion from $2.9 billion, and total net profit after tax was $3 billion, down from $3.1 billion.

Industry net assets were $27.2 billion at September 30, a decrease of $800 million from the previous year.