The insurance broker Marsh & McLennan Cos. said Wednesday it swung to a second-quarter loss that it attributed in part to the effects of divestiture and continued weakness in its consulting businesses.

Economic volatility has been boosting business at the New York company's core insurance brokerages as customers look for help managing risk. But the recession has weighed on its other operations, such as its consulting and technology segments. Also, insurers are in a price war because of below-average catastrophe rates.

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