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Property and casualty insurers’ results improved sharply in 2013’s first half compared to the same time a year ago, and the industry remains financially strong, but economic pressures mean carriers must achieve stronger underwriting results than in the past to remain profitable, a new analysis shows.

The industry’s 2013 first-half net income after taxes increased by 42.4 percent, to $24.5 billion, compared to the year before, according to an ISO, Property Casualty Insurers Association of America, and Insurance Information Institute analysis. The combined ratio for the first half of the year was 97.9, down from 101.9 in 2012’s first half.

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