The first quarter of 2006 could represent a profit peak for theproperty-casualty sector, according to one leading analyst.

Bear Stearns analyst David Small said yesterday that theunusually light catastrophe losses along with underwriterscontinuing to earn through profitable 2005 business could spell thebeginning of the end of such robust profits as were reported.

“While it may take several quarters for lower pricing to impactreported results, we suspect growing equity bases and increasedcompetition will pressure ROEs,” he wrote.

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