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AmTrust's new quota share; Wells insurance settlement; Suncorp hail claims mount

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AmTrust's new quota share; Wells insurance settlement; Suncorp hail claims mount

Suncorp Group Ltd. has received 24,800 claims from the hailstorms that struck the Sydney, Central Coast and South East Queensland regions of Australia on Dec. 21, 2018, and the figure is expected to rise over the coming weeks. The expected total claims costs related to the hailstorms are expected to exceed the pretax maximum first-event retention limit within Suncorp's reinsurance program, limiting the financial impact of the event to A$250 million.

Meanwhile, Insurance Australia Group Ltd. finalized its catastrophe reinsurance program for 2019. The program comprises a main catastrophe cover for losses up to A$9 billion, including one prepaid reinstatement.

AmTrust Financial Services Inc. entered into a new quota share agreement with Swiss Re AG on its U.S. small commercial business for 2019, which totals about $2.9 billion in projected written premiums.

Zurich-based catastrophe insurance data provider PERILS AG said its final insured property market loss estimate for extratropical Cyclone Burglind stands at €756 million, up from a previous loss estimate of €724 million, reported in July. The storm affected the British Isles and the European continent in early January 2018.

Wells Fargo & Co., in a settlement agreement with the California Department of Insurance, agreed to not transact any new business during the remaining term of its two insurance licenses, which expire in July 2020 and September 2020, respectively.

Safety National Casualty Corp., a unit of Tokio Marine Holdings Inc., acquired Oklahoma-based Midlands Management Corp.

Horace Mann Educators Corp. closed the acquisition of retirement plan provider Benefit Consultants Group Inc.

Credit Union Agencies Alliance Ltd., a strategic alliance between Co-operators Group Ltd., First Credit Union and Aldergrove Credit Union, acquired Envision Insurance Services' book of business in Aldergrove, British Columbia.

Generali sold its entire stake in unit Generali Belgium SA to Athora Holding Ltd.

ABL Life Insurance Co. Ltd., a South Korean unit of China's Anbang Insurance Group Co. Ltd., launched a new wholly owned subsidiary specializing in insurance sales in South Korea, Yonhap News Agency reported

IA Financial Group completed the creation of iA Financial Corp. Inc., a holding company consisting of all iA Financial Group activities.

Seven South Korean insurance companies — including Hyundai Marine & Fire Insurance Co. Ltd., DB Insurance Co. Ltd., KB Insurance Co. Ltd. and Hanwha General Insurance Co. Ltd. — are set to increase their car insurance premiums beginning Jan. 16, The Korea Times reported.

Hannover Re facilitated another $25 million in private catastrophe bonds through its Bermuda-domiciled segregated accounts vehicle, Kaith Re Ltd., Artemis reported.

Now featured on S&P Global Market Intelligence

Top House insurance Democrat rebuffs claim that flood program reform is 'dead': As Democrats take control of the House of Representatives, Rep. Emanuel Cleaver said the chances of pushing through a reform of the National Flood Insurance Program are far higher than they were under Republicans in the last congressional session.

As environment shifts, China's life insurers adjust sales strategies for Q1 push: With savings products falling out of favor with regulators and customers, the rush for Chinese life insurers to drum up sales during the beginning of the year should fade away over time.

In other parts of the world

Asia-Pacific: Syndicate Bank, SBI Life sign bancassurance deal; IAG boosts catastrophe cover

Europe: No deal for NordLB, Helaba; ex-Deutsche Börse CEO settles; Carige administrators

Middle East & Africa: Saudi's NCB, Riyad Bank seek merger advisers; Britam expects lower FY'18 result

The day ahead

Early morning futures indicators pointed to a lower opening for the U.S. market.

In Asia, Hang Seng fell 0.26% to 25,064.36, while Japanese markets were closed.

In Europe, around midday, the FTSE 100 fell 0.61% to 6,693.36, and the Euronext 100 was down 1.03% to 900.95.

Click here to read about today's financial markets, setting out the factors driving stocks, bonds and currencies around the world ahead of the New York open.

On the macro front

The motor vehicle sales report, the MBA Mortgage applications report, the ADP employment report, the jobless claims report, the ISM manufacturing index, the construction spending report, the Fed balance sheet and the money supply report are due out today.

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