Company's gross written premium has improved by £7.5 million to £228.4 million

Co-operative Financial Services’ (CFS’) general insurance profits have increased to £14.6 million for the 28 weeks to 25 July 2009, compared to a £1.5 million loss last year.

The gross written premium has improved by £7.5 million to £228.4 million. The retention rates have remained broadly stable despite the economic climate. There has also been an increase in new business income of 27%, said the company.

The general insurance claims ratio was 73.3%. Overall, the costs remained broadly unchanged, despite increases in overall income, new business volumes and associated commissions.

The new business developments included the launch of market business insurance products, offering customers the chance to tailor policies to suit their needs. Other new developments included improvements to the web sales proposition and full ‘quote and close’ capabilities for the home insurance product provided in the bank branches.

The first half of 2009 has seen the continuation of the difficult economic conditions and turbulence in the markets, which reached a six year low in early March. The present value of new business premiums for the first half of 2009 has risen by 21% to £307.5 million, when compared with the first half of 2008.

The gross earned insurance premiums for the life and pensions business in the first half of 2009 was £269.8 million, compared to £274.4 million for the corresponding period last year.