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money.bmpInsurance officials are bending over backwards to dampen any enthusiasm about industry-wide first-quarter results, but the truth is that despite a softening market and tenuous investment climate, profits are still flowing in at an impressive rate, no matter what carriers say about relative rates of return.

Indeed, although first-quarter net income for U.S. property-casualty insurers fell for the second consecutive year and the combined ratio ticked up slightly, the industrys bottom line remains at record levels, according to the latest consolidated results.

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