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Munich Re profit rebounds on lower disaster losses

Tuesday - 3/12/2013, 7:30am  ET

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) -- German reinsurer Munich Re saw profit more than quadruple last year as payouts for natural disasters fell and the company moved past losses on Greek bonds.

The company said Tuesday net profit came in at EUR3.2 billion ($4.16 billion) compared with last year's EUR712 million. Revenue from gross premiums rose 5 percent to EUR5.1 billion.

The 2011 result was hampered by losses on bonds issued by crisis-stricken Greece, which struck a deal to have creditors take less than they were owed.

Expenses for natural disasters fell to EUR1.3 billion from EUR4.5 billion in 2011. The biggest 2012 expense was Superstorm Sandy, which hit the east coast of the United States in October and cost Munich Re around EUR800 million.

The company said it expects profits of about EUR3 billion this year, and announced it would raise its dividend payout to EUR7.00 per share for 2012 from EUR6.25 per share the previous year.

Reinsurance companies write backup insurance for primary insurers so the industry can handle catastrophic losses.


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