Donegal Group said that the claims activity from the winter weather and a number of fires has adversely impacted its earnings and combined ratio for the first quarter of 2010.

According to Donegal, the catastrophe losses from two 2010 winter storms and other non-catastrophe weather-related losses were $9m pre-tax after reinsurance. These losses represented a $0.31 per diluted share after tax, as calculated using an estimated annual effective tax rate for 2010. The fire losses were $8m pre-tax for the first quarter of 2010, compared to $7m for the same quarter of 2009.

The company said that it expects to report a combined ratio of 106% for the first quarter of 2010, compared to 105.9% for the first quarter of 2009.

Donegal Group is an insurance holding company whose insurance subsidiaries offer personal and commercial property and casualty lines of insurance in five Mid-Atlantic states, seven Southeastern states and six Midwestern states.