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Liberty Mutual net income up 26.6% in third quarter

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Liberty Mutual Holding Co. Inc. and its subsidiaries posted net income of $609 million during the third quarter of 2014, a 26.6% increase over the same period a year earlier, the insurer reported Monday.

Both catastrophe losses and net incurred losses attributable to prior years dropped, as did loss on extinguishment of debt, according to the company.

Net written premiums for the quarter ended Sept. 30 increased 2.8% over those of the same period a year earlier to $9.45 billion. The insurer's combined ratio improved to 96.6% compared to 99.0% in the third quarter of 2013.

For the first nine months of the year, net written premium grew 4.0% year over year to $27.42 billion. The combined ratio improved to 98.8% from 99.5%

“We had a solid third quarter, with net written premium growth of 2.8%, net income of $609 million and an improvement of 2.4 points in the combined ratio,” Liberty Mutual Chairman and CEO David H. Long said in a statement. “We also completed two significant capital-related transactions. We entered into a reinsurance agreement with National Indemnity Co., substantially mitigating the uncertainty of certain long-tail liabilities, and raised $1.05 billion in debt. These transactions further strengthened the balance sheet and the overall financial position of the company.”