Lloyds of London profits slip on investments and claims

LONDON (Reuters) - The Lloyd's of London insurance market saw its profit slip during the first six months of 2013 with lower investment returns and 4.85 billion pounds of claims offsetting robust business performance.

In a trading statement on Thursday, Lloyds said investment returns fell to 247 million pounds from 619 million pounds in the first half of 2012, citing "continued challenging economic conditions."

Lloyd's financial performance represents the combined results of about 80 competing insurance and reinsurance syndicates that operate under its banner. Listed companies which operate syndicates at Lloyd's include Catlin (CGL.L), Hiscox (HSX.L) and Amlin (AML.L)

Headline profits for the market were 1.38 billion pounds, compared with 1.53 billion pounds in 2012.

The combined ratio, a measure of profitability for insurance business showing how much of premium income is paid out in claims and expenses, improved to 86.9 percent from 88.7 percent in 2012.

Gross written premiums increased 5 percent to 15.5 billion pounds.