The reinsurer had posted a net profit of Rs 513.84 crore for the same quarter a year ago.
Higher agriculture losses and flood claims across India pulled down the September quarter (Q2) numbers of reinsurer General Insurance Corporation of India (GIC Re) and pushed it into the red with Rs 595.45 crore net loss for the period.
The reinsurer had posted a net profit of Rs 513.84 crore for the same quarter previous year.
The underwriting losses increased to Rs 2,373.25 crore in Q2 compared to a loss of Rs 2,264.88 crore a year ago. Consequently, the combined ratio rose to 111.3 percent for H1FY20 compared to 110.3 percent in the year-ago period.
Combined ratio is a reflection of whether the premiums collected versus the claims paid. A ratio below 100 percent indicates that an insurer is making underwriting profit or in simple terms premiums and claims are proportional.
All segments except motor insurance, other miscellaneous and personal accident posted an underwriting loss. The fire segment had the largest underwriting loss at Rs 1,315.88 crore.
Similarly, agriculture insurance underwriting loss stood at Rs 307.89 crore in Q2 which is a direct reflection of the rise in crop claims in FY20. Last year, GIC Re had an underwriting profit of Rs 191.27 crore in the crop segment.
A series of small and big cyclones, floods as well as heavy rainfall has increased the quantum of crop losses in FY20 by atleast 30 percent.
GIC Re provides risk cover to the insurance companies providing policies to the farmers. Hence a rise in crop losses directly impacts the reinsurer's books.
In comparison to the losses, the premium saw a single-digit growth in the September quarter.The net earned premium grew by 8.2 percent year-on-year (YoY) to Rs 11,911.06 crore in the second quarter. GIC Re's total assets increased by 6.94 percent YoY to Rs 1.26 lakh crore at the end of September.