Old Republic International Corporation (NYSE:ORI) Q4 2014 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

Jan 22, 2015 • 03:00 pm ET


Old Republic International Corporation (NYSE:ORI) Q4 2014 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript


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Good day, and welcome to the Old Republic International Fourth Quarter 2014 Earnings Conference Call. At this time all participants are in a listen-only mode. Following the presentation, we will conduct a question-and-answer session. Instructions will be provided at that time for you to queue for questions. I would like to remind everyone that this conference is being recorded. I would now like to turn the conference over to Scott Eckstein with MWW. Please go ahead.

Scott Eckstein

Thank you, operator. Good afternoon and thank you for joining us today for Old Republic's conference call to discuss fourth quarter and full year 2014 results. This morning, we distributed a copy of the press release. If there is anyone online who did not receive a copy, you can access it at Old Republic's website, which is www.oldrepublic.com.

(Cautionary Forward-Looking Statements)

Participating in today's call, we have Karl Mueller, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer; Rande Yeager, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Old Republic Title Insurance Companies; and Al Zucaro, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.At this time, I'd like to turn over the call over to Al Zucaro for his opening remarks. Please go ahead, sir.

Al Zucaro

we are appreciate of your interest in our company and keeping up with it. In recent times, those of you who follow us may recall we've had four of us handling these calls, and this time around there are just three of us and was just indicated Karl Mueller and Rande Yeager and myself. Scott Rager who usually handles the General Insurance portion of this discussion had a scheduling conflict to deal with, so I'll start the discussion today with some comments relative to General Insurance and which is you know is our largest segment of business.

And so with regard to this segment, the long and the short of what we reported this morning is that both the final quarter of last year as well as 2014, that for those periods of general insurance business just did not perform very well certainly not as well as we had anticipated at the beginning of the year and most certainly not as well as it is capable of performing in good times and bad times.

But at the risk of sounding self-congratulatory I do think that we did a decent job explaining the results and the reasons for the bad news in this morning's release and in it you will see that of course the key drivers of this news are the adverse developments of prior year's claim cost which as we've reported fairly consistently in a recent past have trended up with some regularity through most of these years, the last two or three years through year end 2014. And this aggravated state was much more pronounced in final quarter of 2014.Most of you not everyone are familiar with the fact that we do publish a statistical

Al Zucaro

exhibit concurrent with issuance of our press release and that exhibit is on our Old Republic website.And if you look