American Safety Insurance Holdings, Ltd.

Reports a Net Loss of $8.2 Million

for the Fourth Quarter 2008

 

HAMILTON, Bermuda, March 4, 2009

– American Safety Insurance Holdings, Ltd. (NYSE:ASI) today reported a net loss of $8.2 million, or $0.80 per diluted share, for the 2008 fourth quarter, compared to net earnings of $6.8 million, or $0.61 per diluted share, for the same period of 2007. Net operating loss for the quarter, after excluding realized investment losses of $6.0 million, was $2.2 million, or $0.22 per diluted share, compared to net operating earnings of $7.0 million which excludes realized losses of $0.2 million, or $0.63 per diluted share, for the 2007 quarter.

 

Net earnings for the year ended December 31, 2008 were $0.3 million, or $0.03 per diluted share, compared to $28.2 million, or $2.56 per diluted share, for 2007. Net operating earnings for 2008 were $14.7 million, or $1.37 per diluted share, compared to net operating earnings of $28.5 million, or $2.59 per diluted share, in 2007.

 

Financial Highlights for the quarter and year included:

 

§

Gross premiums written increased 8% for the quarter and 19% for the year.

 

§

Net premiums earned increased 35% for the quarter and 17% for the year.

 

§

Net investment income was $7.5 million for the quarter and $29.6 million for the year, compared to $7.8 million and $30.3 million, respectively, for 2007.

 

§

Cash flow from operations totaled $31.1 million for the quarter and $101.2 million for the year compared to $11.9 million and $67.0 million, respectively, in 2007.

 

§

Loss ratio was 70.1% for the quarter and 63.1% for the year, compared to 65.6% and 61.3%, respectively, in 2007.

 

§

The combined ratio was 115.4% for the quarter and 106.0% for the year, compared to 105.0% and 97.4%, respectively, in 2007.

 

§

Book values per share and per diluted share at December 31, 2008 were $21.12 and $20.55, respectively, compared to $21.53 and $20.81, respectively, at December 31, 2007.

 

Fourth Quarter Results

 

The fourth quarter results include $6.0 million of realized losses due to other-than-temporary-impairment of investments, $3.9 million of net prior year adverse reserve development and $1.6 million of reinsurance reinstatement premiums primarily related to the environmental line in New York and a $2.5 million increase in the allowance for reinsurance recoverables. These items, totaling $14.0 million, increased the combined ratio by 17.0 percentage points. The 2007 quarter included $0.2 million of net realized investment losses, $1.8 million of net prior year adverse reserve development and $2.3 million of additional ceded reinsurance premium, primarily in our environmental line, increasing the combined ratio by 11.5 percentage points.

 

Revenues for the quarter were $48.6 million, an increase of 14.5% over the comparable 2007 quarter. Excluding net realized losses on investments, revenues totaled $54.6 million, or 27.9% over the 2007 quarter. Net premiums earned totaled $46.6 million, an increase of $12.1 million, or 35.2%, over 2007. The increase in net premiums earned, primarily from our diversification efforts, more than offset declines in other lines.

 


The following information was filed by American Safety Insurance Holdings Ltd (ASI) on Wednesday, March 4, 2009 as an 8K 2.02 statement, which is an earnings press release pertaining to results of operations and financial condition. It may be helpful to assess the quality of management by comparing the information in the press release to the information in the accompanying 10-K Annual Report statement of earnings and operation as management may choose to highlight particular information in the press release.

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