Tower Group Inc. (NASDAQ:TWGP) reported its results for the fourth quarter. Net income for Tower Group Inc. fell to $25 million (63 cents per share) vs. $33.3 million (80 cents per share) a year earlier. This is a decline of 24.8% from the year-earlier quarter. Revenue rose 8.4% to $454.9 million from the year-earlier quarter. Tower Group Inc. beat the mean analyst estimate of 62 cents per share. It beat the average revenue estimate of $417.3 million.
Michael H. Lee, President and Chief Executive Officer of Tower Group, Inc., stated “During the fourth quarter, we continued to see positive trends in our business, especially from the organic growth we generated from our newly created Assumed Reinsurance and Customized Solutions business units. We also began to see favorable pricing trends in certain lines of business, including homeowners, commercial property and workers compensation. We expect these favorable pricing trends to continue into 2012. For the full year, while we are disappointed with the negative impact on our earnings due to the losses from Hurricane Irene and other severe weather related events, we are otherwise pleased with our overall operating results and encouraged by the progress that we made with regard to some of our long term business objectives. In particular, we expanded our product offerings, improved existing business units and created new business units to generate organic growth. In addition, we are pleased with the progress that we made with some significant technology projects, including our personal lines platform redesign, which we plan to introduce during the early part of this year. As we enter 2012, we are cautiously optimistic due to the improved pricing environment and the continued benefits from our organic growth initiatives.”
Competitors to Watch: The Travelers Companies, Inc. (NYSE:TRV), W.R. Berkley Corporation (NYSE:WRB), The Progressive Corp. (NYSE:PGR), Markel Corporation (NYSE:MKL), American Financial Group (NYSE:AFG), RLI Corp. (NYSE:RLI), Harleysville Group Inc. (NASDAQ:HGIC), The Hanover Insurance Group, Inc. (NYSE:THG), and Selective Insurance Group (NASDAQ:SIGI).
URS Corporation (NYSE:URS) reported a lower net income in fourth quarter, missing analysts’ estimates. Net income for URS Corporation fell to $28.4 million (37 cents per share) vs. $60 million (75 cents per share) a year earlier. This is a decline of 52.6% from the year-earlier quarter. Revenue rose 0.6% to $2.39 billion from the year-earlier quarter. URS Corporation fell short of the mean analyst estimate of 98 cents per share. It fell short of the average revenue estimate of $2.53 billion.
Martin M. Koffel, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, stated: “URS’ North American operations performed well in 2011, with all of our U.S. and Canadian operations either meeting or exceeding our expectations. While we generate the significant majority of our revenues in North America, our overall results for 2011 were affected by weakness in certain international markets, particularly Europe and the Middle East. During the fourth quarter, we reduced our workforce and consolidated systems and offices as a result of the turbulent economic conditions in these regions.”
Competitors to Watch: Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. (NYSE:JEC), Fluor Corporation (NYSE:FLR), KBR, Inc. (NYSE:KBR), Michael Baker Corporation (AMEX:BKR), Tetra Tech, Inc. (NASDAQ:TTEK), The Shaw Group Inc. (NYSE:SHAW), Tutor Perini Corporation (NYSE:TPC), AECOM Technology Corp. (NYSE:ACM), Quanta Services, Inc. (NYSE:PWR), and Willdan Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:WLDN).
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