Springfield employer reports $76M in hurricane-related losses


Assurant, one of Springfield’s biggest employers, reported a net operating loss of $76 million in the third quarter this year, largely related to hurricanes that smashed into Texas and the Caribbean over the past several months.

Company officials said the New York-based company still expects to meet its financial goals for the year despite the most recent results.

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“While we incurred significant losses in the quarter associated with Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria, our underlying results were in line with expectations,” said Alan Colberg, Assurant’s president and CEO in a conference call with investors.

The company’s Global Housing Division, based in Springfield, provides insurance and related services in partnership with financial institutions and other major clients. It has more than 1,900 workers here, and it’s hiring as many as 130 more workers to handle additional work related to serving customers affected by the hurricanes, company officials have said.

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Excluding losses from reportable catastrophes, the company’s net operating income improved compared to the same time last year, Colburg said.

The company incurred $191 million of reportable catastrophes in the third quarter this year, compared to $33.2 million in reportable catastrophes in the same period last year. Excluding the reportable catastrophes, the company’s Global Housing division saw its net operating income dip slightly compared with the same period last year, according to information from the company.

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Hurricane Harvey struck first, battering the Texas Coast and parts of Louisiana at the end of August. Damage from that storm prompted the company to send a team of workers from locations across the U.S. to Texas to help policyholders with processing payments related to repairing damaged homes.

Hurricane Irma soon followed and swept up the Florida Coast, causing significant damage to the Florida Keys. In Mid-September, the Caribbean was hit again by Hurricane Maria, a Category 4 hurricane that devastated Puerto Rico and parts of the U.S. Virgin Islands.



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