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RSA share price surges as group posts rise in premiums

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Shares in RSA Insurance (LON:RSA) have climbed higher in London in today’s session as investors welcomed the company’s first-quarter update which revealed a rise in premiums. The results come ahead of the blue-chip insurer’s annual general meeting tomorrow.

As of 14:45 BST, RSA’s share price had added 1.83 percent to 544.20p, outperforming the broader UK market, with the benchmark FTSE 100 index having fallen into the red and currently standing 0.66 percent lower at 7,223.30 points. The group’s shares have given up more than 14 percent of their value over the past year, as compared with about a 5.6-percent fall in the Footsie.

RSA posts first-quarter results

RSA announced in a statement today that its net written premiums had climbed three percent in the first quarter as compared with a prior-year period. On an adjusted basis, however, they were flat and broadly in line with the company’s plans for the quarter. The company said that its investment income was consistent with the range guided in February.

“RSA’s Q1 results are in-line with our demanding plans for the period,” the company’s chief executive Stephen Hester commented in the statement. “While still early in the year, extensive underwriting actions are also on track, responding to 2018’s challenges. We remain focused on delivering positively for customers and shareholders in 2019.”

Analysts on blue-chip insurer

Proactive Investors quoted Nicholas Hyett, equity analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown as commenting, that the fact that RSA had managed to “keep premiums, combined operating ratios and operating profits steady or growing during a cyclical squeeze for the general insurance market” was “testament” to its leadership and a “geographically diversified model that’s able to smooth lumps and bumps of individual markets”.

According to MarketBeat, the blue-chip insurer currently boasts a ‘buy’ rating, while the average target for the RSA share price stands at 631.42p.

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