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CNA Financial Q4 net income rises 23%

CNA Financial has reported a net income of $302m, or $1.09 per common share for the fourth quarter of 2010, compared to $246m, or $0.63 per common share for the same quarter of the previous year.

The net operating income for the fourth quarter of 2010 was $326m, compared to $197m for the same corresponding quarter of the last year.

Total revenues for the fourth quarter of 2010 were $2.29bn, compared to $2.39bn for the same quarter of 2009.

Property & casualty operations gross written premiums for the fourth quarter of 2010 were $1.89bn, compared to $1.9bn for the same period last year.

Property & casualty operations combined ratios for the fourth quarter and full year 2010 were 89.6% and 94.8%, respectively. Book value per common share was $40.70 for the fourth quarter of 2010, compared to $35.91 at for the same period last year.

Net income for the full year 2010 was $690m, or $2.28 per common share, compared to $419m, or $1.10 per common share for the year 2009.

Full year 2010 results included an after-tax net loss of $365m related to the previously announced Loss Portfolio Transfer (LPT) transaction with National Indemnity that closed on August 31, 2010, of which $344m was recognized in continuing operations and $21m in discontinued operations.

CNA Financial chairman and CEO Thomas Motamed said that the specialty segment continues to deliver superior results in an extremely competitive environment.

"We continue to be optimistic about the long term prospects of our commercial segment, which has delivered five consecutive quarters of rate increases, as well as an improving production trend, risk selection and price differentiation.

"We are also proud to have finished the year with a very strong balance sheet and capital position. Our book value per common share increased 13% to $40.70 from year end 2009. The Loss portfolio transfer in the third quarter enhanced CNA’s financial stability by substantially eliminating our exposures to legacy asbestos and pollution liabilities.

"In addition, during the fourth quarter we redeemed the remaining $500m of the $1.25bn of senior preferred stock we sold to Loews Corporation in 2008," Motamed said.