US commercial property casualty underwriter Travelers Insurance has reported that its second quarter of 2012 net income was $499m, or $1.26 per diluted share, compared to a net loss of $364m, or $0.88 per diluted share during the same period previous year.

For the quarter ended on 30 June 2012, its operating income stood at $495m, or $1.26 per diluted share, against an operating loss of $377m, or $0.91 per diluted share, during the corresponding quarter earlier fiscal.

The insurer reported that it sustained catastrophe losses of $357m in the current quarter of 2012, after tax ($549m pre tax), versus $1.085bn after tax ($1.668bn pre tax) in the prior year quarter.

Travelers chairman and chief executive officer Jay Fishman said the firm’s second quarter net income of $499m benefited from meaningful improvement in its underlying underwriting margins as well as strong net investment income given the continuing low interest rate environment.

"However, earnings were also impacted by weather-related losses which, while much lower than in the prior year quarter, were considerably higher than we would have expected based on historical experience," Fishman added.

"In Business Insurance, renewal rate change exceeded 7%, with stable retentions, demonstrating the success of our active pricing strategy and our continued focus on improving profitability."