Beazley shares soar as insurer swings to a profit

(Reuters) — Shares in Lloyd’s of London insurer Beazley PLC leaped to a 10-month high on Friday after it swung to first-half profit and said it was investing heavily in its cyber insurance business to meet rising demand in the face of ransomware attacks.

Cyber insurance has become a growing focus for specialist insurers such as those operating in the Lloyd’s of London market, though a spate of recent attacks has also made some more cautious about the cover they offer.

“We continue to invest strongly in our cyber infrastructure because that is probably the most significant opportunity we have ahead of us,” Beazley Chief Executive Adrian Cox told Reuters.

Beazley reported a pretax profit of $167.3 million for the six months ended June 30 after a loss of $13.8 million a year ago, but said it would only consider a dividend at year-end. It released $95.7 million it had

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Hippo unveils homeowners association product

Hippo Enterprises Inc. on Friday said the first offering from its commercial lines unit is a homeowners association product.

Coverage will include commercial property, fidelity, inland marine, data breaches, general liability, combined directors and officers and employment practices liability, hired and non-owned auto liability with physical damage coverage, and available excess liability covering underlying coverage parts.

Hippo said it will also offer cover “for items that personal lines and traditional commercial lines typically do not include, such as pools, landscaping, private roads, retaining walls, and elevator collision.”

Coverage is available now in Arizona,  expanding to Colorado, Illinois, Michigan, Nevada, Oregon, Tennessee and Utah later this year, Hippo said in its statement, adding that additional commercial programs, including condominium associations and single-family rentals, will also begin rolling out later this year.

Rick McCathron, Hippo’s president, said in the statement the insurer wants to “modernize the commercial insurance experience.”

Hippo said in

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Family business: Third generation joins insurance brokerage

In 1985, Margaret J. Grassi quit her corporate job in Boston to open her own insurance brokerage firm in Wareham.

In 1989, her daughter, Deb, joined. 

And now, Deb’s son Matt is part of the team — the third generation to be a part of the company.

Margaret said that she never imagined her company would become a family business when she struck out on her own. She faced some resistance from the corporate job she was quitting.

“The big boss came down from New York and said I couldn’t afford to quit,” Margaret recalled. “I was determined I was going to make it.”

She was one of two women who owned their own brokerages in the area at the time, Deb said. Insurance brokers work to help clients help the right insurance plan, and work with a variety of insurance carriers. Brokers also advocate for clients when they need

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What Does Builder’s Risk Insurance Cover? – Forbes Advisor

Editorial Note: Forbes Advisor may earn a commission on sales made from partner links on this page, but that doesn’t affect our editors’ opinions or evaluations.

Builder’s risk insurance provides property coverage for buildings and structures that are under construction. If you’re a builder or a commercial property owner, you could face considerable monetary loss if something goes wrong with the construction of a building if you don’t have builder’s risk insurance.

This coverage is also known as “course of construction insurance.”

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What Builder’s Risk Insurance Covers

Builder’s risk insurance protects against fire, wind, theft and vandalism during the construction process. It also protects against lightning, hail, explosions and hurricanes. Here’s a look at all the things a builder’s risk insurance policy covers.

A builder’s risk policy may cover:

  • Buildings and
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Most commercial rate changes increase in Q2: Ivans

Second-quarter 2021 renewal rate changes for most major commercial lines of business increased year over year, save for workers compensation, according to a report Wednesday from Ivans Insurance Services, a division of Tampa, Florida-based Applied Systems Inc.

When compared sequentially with results from first-quarter 2021, second-quarter renewal rate changes increased for commercial auto, business owner’s policy, general liability and umbrella lines, while commercial property and workers compensation saw decreases.

In commercial property lines, the average premium renewal rate change was 5.54% compared with 5.82% in the first quarter and 5.29% in second-quarter 2020. The quarter premium renewal rate change reached its low of 5.43% in May and its high of 5.68% at the end of the quarter.

For commercial auto, second-quarter average premium renewal rate change averaged 4.51%, up from 4.25% in the first quarter but down from 4.72% in second-quarter 2020. The quarter began with a high of 4.65%

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Insurance sector looks inward on climate, governance issues

Brokers and insurers have long focused on helping companies mitigate climate risks, but managing a broad spectrum of environmental, social and governance concerns is becoming a critical part of how the industry does business.

Employees, policyholders, investors and ratings agencies, in addition to climate activists, are increasingly scrutinizing how businesses, including brokers and insurers, address a range of ESG-related issues, including environmental stewardship, climate change, diversity and inclusion, racial justice and workplace conduct, experts say. 

In June, an activist investor forced the board of Exxon Mobil Corp. to elect “climate-aware” director candidates, and in May a court in the Netherlands ordered Royal Dutch Shell PLC to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 45% of 2019 levels by 2030. Also in June, Legal & General Investment Management, Britain’s biggest asset manager, dropped American International Group Inc. and three other companies from several of its funds over what it called “insufficient” response to

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Aon names cybersecurity managing director

Aon PLC said Tuesday it has named Adam Bixby as managing director, proactive security leader, for cyber solutions North America.

Aon said in a statement Mr. Bixby, who is New York-based, will be responsible for the success of the proactive security practices, advisory and testing, leading business development, service delivery, people and operations.

Mr. Bixby previously served as co-practice leader of Aon’s cybersecurity testing team, according to the statement. This is a new position.

Aon said in addition to his role at the brokerage, he serves as a hacking technical consultant for TV and movies, including “Mr. Robot,” “Ocean’s 8,” “The Flight Attendant” and “The Equalizer.” He was a security forces member in the U.S. Air Force before his cybersecurity career, Aon said.

It was revealed earlier this month that Marsh & McLennan Cos. Inc. was hit by a data breach in April involving access to Social Security numbers and

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Marsh McLennan reveals April data breach

Marsh & McLennan Cos. Inc. was hit by a data breach in April involving access to Social Security numbers and other personal information of staff, former staff, clients and a range of other people linked to the brokerage.

The company sent a breach notification dated June 30, which was obtained by Business Insurance, stating that it discovered the breach on April 26 and that an “unauthorized actor had leveraged a vulnerability in a third party’s software since at least April 22.”

The breach involved a “limited set of data,” and Marsh McLennan notified law enforcement authorities and took action that ended the breach on April 30, the notification said. The company said it reset system access rights and imposed additional restrictions.

The information involved included names, Social Security numbers or other federal tax identification numbers.

Marsh McLennan said in the notification it held the data because recipients were current or

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State Auto Financial sold to Liberty Mutual for $1 billion

One of Columbus’ longtime insurance companies is getting a new owner as consolidation in the industry continues.

State Auto Financial said Monday that it is being bought by Boston-based Liberty Mutual in a $1 billion deal being pitched as a way to help Liberty expand its offerings for small commercial insurance and consumers.

Liberty Mutual is buying State Auto for $52 per share, or about triple its closing price of $17.26 on Friday. 

State Auto said it doesn’t expect the deal to result in any staff reductions.

“Liberty Mutual looks forward to welcoming more than 2,000 State Auto associates to their team once the acquisition is approved and closed,” State Auto spokesman Kyle Anderson said. “Liberty Mutual has a long history of strategic acquisitions and successfully integrating those companies to optimize the value for Liberty Mutual and our customers and distribution partners.”

Liberty Mutual has committed to operating out of

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Liberty Mutual in $2.29 billion mega deal

Liberty Mutual will also gain roughly 3,400 independent agencies across 33 states, adding to its already sizeable network of more than 100,000 independent agencies countrywide. This will make Liberty Mutual the second largest carrier in the independent agency distribution channel in the United States.

Through the deal, Liberty Mutual will also add $2.3 billion in premium and will significantly expand market share in personal lines and small commercial insurance.

Read next: Liberty Mutual Insurance reaches “important chapter” with leadership shuffle

“State Auto Group’s capabilities and product expertise are an ideal complement to Liberty Mutual’s domestic personal lines and small commercial business, and we welcome 2,000 talented associates to our family,” said Liberty Mutual chairman and chief executive officer David Long.

“Equally appealing are its values. For almost a century, State Auto has celebrated a culture of caring for people, exceptional service and deep philanthropy, mirroring our purpose to help people

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