Greenlight’s earnings sink in wake of earthquakes

| 03/05/2011

(CNS): Cayman based re insurance firm Greenlight Capital Re, Ltd has announced a net loss of $43 million for the first quarter of this year compared to losses of $12.4 million for the same period in 2010. The firm said in a statement that the earthquakes in both New Zealand and Japan, and the tsunami, had impacted the reinsurance sector during the beginning of the year and were the major reasons for the firm’s losses. The loss translates into a loss of the value per share of $1.19 for the first quarter of 2011, compared to the 34cents shareholders last at the beginning of last year.

"A number of global events occurred in the first quarter of 2011 which impacted the reinsurance sector. We reported a small underwriting loss in what remains a challenging environment," said David Einhorn, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Greenlight Re. "Our investment portfolio continued to be defensively positioned, and suffered a loss due principally to the underperformance of our short positions."

Aside from the earthquakes the firm had an investment loss of $36.2 million compared to a net investment loss of $16.8 million in the same period in 2010.

"Our frequency-oriented portfolio was not impacted materially by the large events that resonated throughout the industry," said Len Goldberg, Chief Executive Officer of Greenlight Re. "We remain committed to our strategy and are pleased with our underwriting portfolio. We are well positioned to take advantage of any upturn in pricing that may result from recent industry events."

Goldberg also announced his retirement as CEO earlier this week and will be leaving the firmin August. He will be replaced by Bart Hedges, the reinsurer’s president and chief underwriting officer.
Goldberg has been CEO and a director at Greenlight Re since August 2005 and will remain an active member on the board.
“I have made a personal decision to return to the U.S. to spend more time with my family,” Goldberg said in a statement.

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