RSA is to cut about a third of the business that it writes in London’s specialist and wholesale insurance markets.

The insurer said on Tuesday that it would pull out of some of its construction, freight and marine lines of insurance which were “unlikely to satisfy the Group’s profitability requirements in the foreseeable future.”

The businesses RSA is dropping account for about £100m of annual premiums.

There has been a broad push across the London wholesale insurance markets this year to cut out loss making or underperforming businesses, as worries have risen about losses last year and a lack of competitiveness against other markets.

Lloyd’s of London has been particularly active, pressuring the syndicates in the market to eliminate their least profitable businesses.

Hiscox said earlier this month that it had “refocused” its director’s & officer’s liability business and had also cut back in areas such as aviation and extended warranty.

RSA warned on profits in September, with chief executive Stephen Hester blaming “an unusually bad quarter in the UK and London market.”

Steve Lewis, chief executive of RSA’s international business, said on Tuesday that the changes would: “enable us to take a much more targeted approach, focusing our efforts on specialist areas where we have market leading expertise and capacity.”

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