August 7, 2019 / 6:00 AM / 13 days ago

UPDATE 1-Munich Re Q2 net profit up 36%, maintains 2019 profit forecast

* Profit helped by low claims from major losses

* Release of reserves also lifts profit

* Sees profit of around 2.5 billion euros in 2019 (Updates with details)

FRANKFURT, Aug 7 (Reuters) - German reinsurer Munich Re on Wednesday reported a 36% rise in net profit in the second quarter, helped by low claims from major losses, and stuck to its forecast for 2019.

Net profit was 993 million euros ($1.11 billion), up from 728 million euros a year ago. Last month, the company had already said that it expected to post a net profit of about 1 billion euros.

Profit was also helped by the release of reserves for losses from previous years.

The company maintained its full-year profit target of around 2.5 billion euros in 2019 and 2.8 billion euros in 2020.

Munich Re and the insurance industry have been trying to bounce back from large natural catastrophes in 2017 and 2018. Reinsurers have been under pressure in recent years from falling prices amid intense competition.

Munich Re’s combined ratio in its property and casualty division, a key measure of profitability, was 87.7% in the second quarter, better than the 102% a year earlier. Readings below 100% indicate profitability.

$1 = 0.8925 euros Reporting by Tom Sims Editing by Thomas Seythal and Michelle Martin

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