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Insurance ratings actions, Oct. 3

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Insurance ratings actions, Oct. 3

S&P Global Market Intelligence compiles ratings actions in the insurance space daily through 5:30 p.m. ET. Actions after 5:30 p.m. ET will be included in the following day's roundup.

Life and health

A.M. Best has upgraded the financial strength rating to B++ from B+ and the long-term issuer credit rating to "bbb" from "bbb-" of Atlantic Coast Life Insurance Co.

Additionally, A.M. Best has affirmed the financial strength rating of B++ and the long-term issuer credit rating of "bbb" of Sentinel Security Life Insurance Co.

The outlook is stable.

The upgrade of Atlantic Coast Life recognizes its improved balance sheet and operating profile trends over the past several years, as well as its enhanced financial flexibility, operating synergies and management expertise, A.M. Best said.

The affirmation of Sentinel Security reflects its continued balance sheet and earnings stability, as well as new premium growth in the annuity product segments.

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Moody's has upgraded the insurance financial strength rating of Protective Life Corp. and its life insurance subsidiaries to A1 from A2, the insurance financial strength rating of Standard Insurance Co. to A1 from A2 and the insurance financial strength rating of Symetra Life Insurance Co. to A1 from A2.

The life insurance subsidiaries of Protective Life include MONY Life Insurance Co., West Coast Life Insurance Co. and Protective Life Global Funding.

Moody's also affirmed the Baa1 senior unsecured debt ratings of Protective Life, StanCorp Financial Group Inc. and Symetra Financial Corp.

The outlook on all ratings for these insurers is stable.

The upgrades of Standard Insurance and Symetra Life reflect Moody's view that the companies are increasingly strategically important to their parent groups. While Protective Life's insurance subsidiaries benefit from similar implicit support, its upgrade reflects improvements in its stand-alone credit profile, Moody's said.

StanCorp Financial's rating reflects the benefit of one notch of implicit parental support relative to its A2 stand-alone credit profile. The stand-alone credit profile is based on the company's strong competitive position in the U.S. group life and disability insurance markets, good capitalization and strong financial resources of its ultimate parent, Meiji Yasuda Life Insurance Co.

Symetra Life's rating reflects one notch of implicit parental support relative to its A2 stand-alone credit profile. The stand-alone credit profile reflects the company's strong capitalization, consistent and good profitability, and strong financial resources of its ultimate parent, Sumitomo Life Insurance Co.

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Moody's has downgraded Genworth Holdings Inc.'s senior unsecured debt to B2 from Ba3.

The rating agency has also downgraded the insurance financial strength ratings of Genworth Life Insurance Co. and Genworth Life Insurance Co. of New York to B2 from Ba3, and the insurance financial strength rating of Genworth Life & Annuity Insurance Co. to Ba1 from Baa2.

The ratings on Genworth's Australia- and Canada-based mortgage insurance units remain unaffected and unchanged, Moody's said.

These actions follow the announcement by Genworth Holdings' parent company Genworth Financial Inc. that it intends to refile its application with the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. and evaluate options to address its upcoming debt maturities in the event that the transaction with China Oceanwide Holdings Group Co. Ltd. is not completed.

The ratings downgrade and continued review for downgrade of Genworth Holdings and its life insurance subsidiaries are driven by continuing delays in obtaining required regulatory approvals for the planned acquisition of the company by China Oceanwide. The downgrade also reflects the need to develop alternative arrangements, in case the transaction does not materialize, Moody's said.

The ratings downgrade and the continued review for downgrade of Genworth Life Insurance and its subsidiary Genworth Life and Annuity Insurance reflect both the uncertain financial flexibility at Genworth and the continued concern about the tail risk associated with the long-term care business in Genworth Life Insurance.

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A.M. Best has placed under review with developing implications the financial strength rating of A- and the long-term issuer credit rating of "a-" of Lincoln Benefit Life Co.

The ratings actions follow the announcement that Lincoln Benefit's ultimate parent, Resolution Life LP, has entered into a definitive agreement to sell Lincoln Benefit to a Global Bankers Insurance Group affiliate.

The ratings of Lincoln Benefit will remain under review until the close of the transaction, A.M. Best said.

Managed care

A.M. Best has assigned financial strength rating of A and long-term issuer credit rating of "a" to Texas Health + Aetna Health Insurance Co. and Texas Health + Aetna Health Plan Inc.

The outlook is stable.

The ratings reflect support of the parent organizations, projected earnings growth and sufficient level of risk-adjusted capitalization, A.M. Best said.

Property and casualty

A.M. Best has upgraded the financial strength rating to B++ from B+ and the long-term issuer credit rating to "bbb" from "bbb-" of National Independent Truckers Insurance Co. A Risk Retention Group.

The outlook has been revised to stable from positive.

The upgrades are based on the company's ongoing history of underwriting profit in the recently challenging commercial auto liability line of business. The outlook reflects the agency's expectation that future results may be less volatile and generally profitable, A.M. Best said.

The rating reflects the company' excellent underwriting practices, good capitalization and favorable operational leverage measures, the agency added.

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A.M. Best has removed from under review with positive implications and upgraded the long-term issuer credit ratings to "a+" from "a" and affirmed the financial strength ratings of A of Atlantic Specialty Insurance Co. and its rated affiliates, Homeland Insurance Co. of New York, Homeland Insurance Co. of Delaware, OBI National Insurance Co., OBI America Insurance Co. and Split Rock Insurance Ltd.

Additionally, A.M. Best has removed from under review with developing implications and withdrawn the long-term issuer credit rating of "bbb" of the group's ultimate parent, White Mountains Insurance Group Ltd.

These ratings actions follow confirmation that White Mountains has closed planned sale of OneBeacon Insurance Group Ltd. to Intact Financial Corp., A.M. Best said.

The ratings upgrade of the OneBeacon Ltdentities reflect the financial and operational benefits that will be derived from Intact Financial's position as a larger, higher-rated organization, the agency said.

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A.M. Best has affirmed the financial strength ratings of A and the long-term issuer credit ratings of "a" of the five title insurance subsidiaries of First American Financial Corp.

The subsidiaries are First American Title Insurance Co., First American Title Insurance Co. of Australia Pty Ltd., First American Title Insurance Co. of Louisiana, First Title Insurance plc and Ohio Bar Title Insurance Co.

Concurrently, A.M. Best has affirmed the long-term issuer credit rating of "bbb" of First American Financial.

Additionally, A.M. Best has affirmed the financial strength ratings of A and the long-term issuer credit ratings of "a" of First American Property & Casualty Insurance Co. Co. and First American Specialty Insurance Co.

The outlook is stable.

The ratings of First American Financial's units reflect their relatively strong risk-adjusted capitalization, driven by improved operating results as well as lower underwriting and affiliated investment leverage. Meanwhile, the ratings of First American Property & Casualty Insurance and First American Specialty Insurance reflect their relatively strong risk-adjusted capitalization, A.M. Best said.

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A.M. Best has affirmed the financial strength rating of A and the long-term issuer credit rating of "a" of Dorinco Reinsurance Co.

The outlook remains stable.

A.M. Best said Dorinco continues to deliver strong combined ratios, positive net income and adequate risk-adjusted capitalization while maintaining a conservative investment portfolio and a prudent approach to underwriting.

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A.M. Best has assigned a financial strength rating of A- and a long-term issuer credit rating of "a-" to Cronus Insurance Co.

The outlook is stable.

Concurrently, A.M. Best has affirmed the financial strength rating of A- and long-term issuer credit rating of "a-" of Titan Insurance Co. Inc., A Risk Retention Group., the immediate parent of Cronus.

The outlook of these ratings is stable.

The ratings reflect Titan Insurance's solid risk-adjusted capitalization, historically profitable operating results and defined mission of providing claims-made-based contractual liability insurance coverage to Ethos Group Inc. and Ethos Administrative Services Inc., which provide service to the automobile industry.