Hartford, Conn. — The financial condition of the property/casualty industry is strong, according to new research by Conning Research and Consulting, which also finds the industry should be able to withstand the current price deterioration affecting insurers.

"The outlook for the next three years—through 2010—is generally soft for the property/casualty industry as a whole. We project continued deterioration in underwriting margins and implied return on equity," says Clint Harris, analyst at Conning. "However, the largest year-over-year increase in combined ratio is in 2008, and while this reflects a return to normal catastrophe losses, much of this deterioration is self-inflicted, as premium prices and premium rate adequacy continue to fall."

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