Lloyd’s back in profit as it prepares for coronavirus impact

Lloyd’s CEO John Neal has insisted the market is in a strong position to respond to the coronavirus pandemic, whilst this morning announcing a return to pre-tax profit in 2019 of £2.5bn compared with a loss of £1bn in 2018. The 2019 performance, he said, was boosted by a 4.8% return on investments compared with only 0.7% in 2018, alongside sustained rate increases and improving underwriting discipline.

Lloyd’s combined ratio improved to 102.1% from 104.5% and net resources increased by 8.6% to £30.6bn with a central solvency ratio of 238%. Gross written premiums totalled £35.9bn, marginally up from £35.5bn in 2018 and gross claims paid were up to £23bn compared to £19.7bn in 2018.

As at 19 March, Lloyd’s solvency ratio stood at 205%.

Neal commented on the results: “Whilst we are pleased to be announcing Lloyd’s return to profitability in 2019 and continued progress across our priorities, our primary focus right now is on supporting our customers and business partners in their time of need. I am confident in Lloyd’s ability to meet the challenges before it, and in doing so demonstrate the market’s unrivalled ability to support people, businesses and countries around the world in response to the far-reaching impacts of COVID-19.”

Neal added that despite the present turbulent markets, it planned to continue to accelerate its Future at Lloyd’s transformation programme. “We have sharpened our focus for 2020, prioritising initiatives that will ensure around 80% of Lloyd’s business is digitally supported, together with fast-tracking claims processing improvements and building the foundational data and technology infrastructure to support Lloyd’s future ecosystem.”

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