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XL Group swings to profits in Q4

XL Group reported a net income attributable to common shareholders of $188.1m, or $0.57 per ordinary share for the fourth quarter of 2010, compared to a net loss of $40.3m, or $0.12 per ordinary share for the same period 2009.

Operating net income of $242.4m for the fourth quarter of 2010, compared to $217.4m for the same corresponding quarter of 2009.

Property and casualty net premiums earned of $1.28bn for the fourth quarter of 2010, compared to $1.25bn for the same quarter of last year.

Net income attributable to common shareholders of $585.4m or $ 1.73 per ordinary share for the full year of 2010, compared to $206.6m or $ 0.61 per ordinary share for the year of 2009.

For the full year 2010, P&C net premiums earned was $5bn, compared to $5.2bn for the year of 2009.

The company said that fourth quarter natural catastrophe losses include $23.3m related to flooding in Australia.

XL Group CEO Mike McGavick said that XL’s fourth quarter results demonstrated progress in several key elements driving shareholder value. The P&C operations’ 91.4% combined ratio benefited from outstanding performance from the reinsurance segment, positive prior year development and sustained operating efficiency.

"We received our license to offer insurance in China and added experienced teams in lines we believe offer prospects for strategic growth.

"Our on-going risk management discipline resulted in our catastrophe losses being at the low end of the expected range, with only modest changes to our initial estimates for the New Zealand earthquake.

"We reduced exposures to non-core holdings, and we continued to return excess capital through share buybacks. We believe XL is in a solid position to meet the challenges of current market conditions and the opportunities that will come as conditions improve," McGavick said.