Progressive Up for the Month as Superstorm Sandy Numbers Roll In

Progressive’s first month following a huge quarter showed continued growth, with the insurer reporting tens of millions of dollars’ worth of losses from Superstorm Sandy that didn’t dampen a 37 percent year-over-year jump in October profits.

For the third quarter, the insurance carrier showed a colossal 83 percent gain in profits when compared with last year’s third quarter. The strong performance was largely buoyed by investment gains, a one-time stock liquidation and steady increase in written premiums.

The rise in premiums continued during October, when Progressive showed a 4 percent increase over last year in both personal auto and specialty insurance policies. The insurer reported $1.57 billion in net premiums in October, an increase of about 8 percent from last year.

Investment income dropped $4.1 million, or 11 percent, but that development was overshadowed by a $13.8 million, or 131 percent, increase in gains from securities.

Overall, Progressive reported 9 percent more total revenues for October ($1.63 billion) when compared with a year ago ($1.5 billion).

Monthly expenses, however, also grew by 8 percent, rising $119 million from $1.42 billion last October to $1.53 billion last month. The jump can be attributed mostly to a $104.7 million increase in losses and loss adjustment expenses, a jump of 9 percent. A little under half of those losses were from claims related to Superstorm Sandy.

The developments left Progressive with a $76.3 million profit for October 2012. Last year, that figure was $55.7 million.

Through October, the insurance provider has reported a year-to-date net income of $729.5 million, down 10.4 percent from the $814.5 million reported during the same period in 2011.

Progressive Reports $55 Million Tab from Superstorm Sandy

The monthly report contained the insurance carrier’s first loss figures from Superstorm Sandy, which cost Progressive $55 million so far.

That loss dwarfed October 2011 figures, when the insurer incurred about $6 million in catastrophe losses.

Before Superstorm Sandy, catastrophe-related losses for the insurer this year had been lagging behind 2011 figures.

During August, the insurer incurred $20 million in losses compared with $37 million in August 2011. At that time, Progressive showed $170 million in disaster-related losses for the year, compared with $195 million during the same period in 2011.

Currently, year-to-date disaster losses are $230 million compared with $204 million in the same period last year.

Progressive Banks on Snapshot Enrollment Expansion, Increases Availability to 43 States

Progressive also announced expansion of its usage-based discount program, called Snapshot, into Illinois. In a quarterly conference call two weeks ago, Progressive CEO Glenn Renwick said interest and awareness in Snapshot is growing, but it’s not yet luring as many customers to switch to Progressive as the company had hoped.


To read about the experiences of current and former Progressive policyholders, readers can find user-submitted Progressive auto insurance reviews online.

About Ben Zitney
Benjamin Zitney has been covering the auto insurance industry for the past 2.5 years. Before coming to Online Auto Insurance News, he produced an extensive company history of the 30-year-old California Joint Powers Insurance Authority and worked at the Cal State Long Beach Daily Forty-Niner as a reporter, copy editor and news editor.

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