Wednesday, August 29, 2012

impact hurricane Isaac on insurance stock

impact hurricane Isaac on insurance stock, insurance shares prices 8/29/2012 : The insurance industry was particularly well positioned to withstand even a serious hurricane this year, says Catherine Seifert of S&P Capital IQ. Insurance companies have been able to maintain strong pricing for policies, well ahead of the claims they've paid out so far in 2012, she says. Publicly traded insurers that write policies in the affected region include Allstate, Travelers, Chubb, the Hartford and AIG, she adds

If the damage from Hurricane Isaac is in line with expectations, that might lead to an even stronger market for insurance and future premiums, prompting many investors to buy the stocks. Meanwhile, the top insurers in the region have adequate capital reserves to handle the losses, Seifert says. "It's counter-intuitive," Seifer says. "If there are heavy storm losses, many insurance companies will be paying out claims, but investors will bid up shares on the belief that (that) will lead to firmer rates."

Investor sentiment was mixed on the insurance industry Wednesday. Shares of major insurers were higher, lower to flat, including Allstate, which rose 13 cents to $37.41, Travelers fell 6 cents to $64.78, Chubb fell 11 cents to $73.50, the Hartford rose 1 cent to $17.81, and AIG fell 21 cents to $34.06.

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