FBD Holdings PLC reported half-yearly results to the end of June on Friday. The results show profit before tax of €19m, which is down €3m compared with 2021.

FBD says gross written premium was up €11m to €193m for the period (+3.3%) and retention levels of existing business are at their highest level in five years.

Farmers and rural dwellers will be interested in premiums and FBD says the average premium is flat across the portfolio, with private motor premiums down 8%.

Difficult investment portfolio

FBD has had a difficult first six months in terms of its investment portfolio, with negative investment returns.

This is reflected through the income statement of -€15m and through other comprehensive income of -€64m. FBD says this is due to significant interest rate rises and associated market volatility.

Commenting on these results, group chief executive Tomás Ó’Midheach said: “I am pleased to report a profit for the first half of 2022. Our focus has been on driving value for our stakeholders and we have made positive progress against this. This is despite the difficult economic backdrop as investment volatility impacts our results.

Investment markets had an exceptionally challenging first six months

"Investment markets had an exceptionally challenging first six months to the year, the increase in inflation and resultant higher interest rates is impacting our returns and reducing the valuation of the FBD bond portfolio.

"Spreads have also widened, which increased bond yields further. A positive side to this is the higher reinvestment yields that will now be available to us in the future.”

Ó’Midheach also said that the "personal injury guidelines appear to be having the desired effect of lowering costs for minor injury claims, justifying the premium reductions given to our customers”.