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Insurance ratings actions: S&P affirms Voya Financial, subsidiaries

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

U.S. and Canada

A.M. Best affirmed the financial strength ratings of A and the long-term issuer credit ratings of "a" of AAA Life Insurance Co. and AAA Life Insurance Co. of New York.

The same ratings of the companies affiliated with AAA Life were also affirmed. Those companies are Auto Club Life Insurance Co., Automobile Club of Southern California Life Insurance Co., AAA Life Re Ltd. and Pacific Beacon Life Reassurance Inc.

The outlook of all ratings is stable.

The ratings reflect the companies' balance sheet strength, which A.M. Best categorizes as very strong, as well as their adequate operating performance, neutral business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management. The ratings also consider rating enhancement from Auto Club Enterprises Insurance Group of Southern California.

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S&P Global Ratings affirmed the BBB+ long-term issuer credit rating of Voya Financial Inc. and the A+ long-term issuer credit and financial strength ratings of the insurer's subsidiaries: Voya Retirement Insurance & Annuity Co., Midwestern United Life Insurance Co., ReliaStar Life Insurance Co., ReliaStar Life Insurance Co. of New York and Security Life of Denver Insurance Co.

The ratings reflect the company's strong business risk profile aided by a wide U.S. geographic footprint, and diversified and stabilized earnings portfolio across employee benefits, retirement markets and from its runoff life insurance business, according to S&P Global Ratings.

The rating action comes after a review of the companies under the rating agency's revised criteria.

The outlook is stable, considering the rating agency's expectation that Voya Financial and its subsidiaries will maintain their market position, balance-sheet strength, capital adequacy and liquidity position.

Europe

S&P Global Ratings affirmed the BBB insurer financial strength and issuer credit ratings of London Steam Ship Owners Mutual Insurance Association Ltd. The outlook was revised to negative from stable.

The action comes after a review of the company under the rating agency's revised criteria.

The negative outlook reflects that there are a few uncertainties regarding the company's ability to enhance its operating performance and bring it more in line with that of its protection and indemnity peers over the next two years.

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S&P Global Ratings affirmed the BBB long-term insurer financial strength rating of Italy's Elba Assicurazioni SpA. The outlook is negative, reflecting that of Italy.

The rating of the insurer considers its strong, profitable niche position in the Italian insurance market, focusing on surety cover, according to the rating agency.

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S&P Global Ratings affirmed the A- long-term insurer financial strength and issuer credit ratings of Spain-based Compania Espanola de Seguros de Credito a la Exportacion SA.

The outlook is stable, reflecting the rating agency's expectation that the ratings will not change over the next two years.

The affirmation of the Spanish insurer's ratings considers its leading role as a credit insurer in Spain and a surety provider in South America, S&P Global Ratings said.

The ratings of the company also benefit from the rating agency's view of its extremely sound capital adequacy, according to S&P Global Ratings' risk-based capital model. Those ratings are mostly constrained by the rating agency's view of the company's business risk profile.

Asia-Pacific

A.M. Best affirmed the financial strength rating of B++ and the long-term issuer credit rating of "bbb+" of Malaysia-based Tune Protect Re Ltd., a subsidiary of Tune Protect Group Bhd. The outlook is stable.

The ratings reflect the company's balance sheet strength, which A.M. Best categorizes as strong, as well as its strong operating performance, limited business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management.

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Fitch Ratings published New Zealand-based Sovereign Assurance Co. Ltd.'s first-time insurer financial strength rating of AA. The outlook is stable.

The company will subsequently be known as AIA New Zealand Ltd. after a name change amid its integration with AIA Group Ltd. AIA Group acquired Sovereign Assurance from Commonwealth Bank of Australia in July 2018.

The rating agency has raised Sovereign Assurance's stand-alone credit profile of "a+" two notches due to its view of the insurer's very important strategic status within AIA Group. The stand-alone credit profile is backed by the New Zealand-based insurer's favorable business profile compared with domestic peers, strong capitalization and leverage, and strong financial performance and earnings, according to Fitch.

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S&P Global Ratings affirmed the BBB+ long-term and A-2 short-term issuer credit ratings of Taiwan's Fubon Financial Holding Co. Ltd.

The ratings reflect the group's strong market position and business profile in Taiwan's life and nonlife insurance, bank and securities sectors, the rating agency said. The ratings also take into account the group's satisfactory funding structure and proactive liquidity management, according to S&P Global Ratings.

S&P Global Ratings also affirmed the A- long-term insurer financial strength and issuer credit ratings of Fubon Financial subsidiaries Fubon Insurance Co. Ltd. and Fubon Life Insurance Co. Ltd.

The ratings of Fubon Insurance reflect the rating agency's view that the insurer's obligation to support weaker group members still hampers its stand-alone credit profile. The ratings of Fubon Life continue to consider the insurer's better earnings resilience, good domestic market position, established business franchise from its large operating scale, high level of controlled distribution channels and good underwriting risk control compared with other life insurers domestically, S&P Global Ratings said.

The outlook is stable, taking into account the rating agency's expectation that the Fubon Financial group will maintain its strong business position in the local market and better earnings resilience versus local peers over the next one to two years.

This S&P Global Market Intelligence news article may contain information about credit ratings issued by S&P Global Ratings. Descriptions in this news article were not prepared by S&P Global Ratings.

Links are current as of publication time; S&P Global Market Intelligence is not responsible if those links are unavailable later.