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'Significant' reinsurance rate hikes to come; Hannover Re cat bond; 2019 heat


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'Significant' reinsurance rate hikes to come; Hannover Re cat bond; 2019 heat

S&P Global Ratings expects "significant" reinsurance rate increases for the Japanese renewals in April and the Florida renewals in June. The rating agency, which has a stable outlook on the global reinsurance sector, said that overall, the January renewals were satisfactory. Low-to-mid single-digit increases were achieved on average, S&P said.

Aon PLC does not expect the reinsurance impact of the latest bushfire season in Australia to be as significant as some previous fires, Insurance Business Australia reported. While the bushfires are significant in terms of duration and size, definitions in reinsurance contracts limit recoverable damage either by time or geographical extent, Aon said. About 10 million-plus hectares have been burned so far, the company estimated.

The size of Hannover Re-sponsored international multiperil 3264 Re Ltd. series 2020-1 catastrophe bond is expected to grow by 50% to $150 million from $100 million, Artemis reported.

Liberty Insurance is scheduled to withdraw from Ireland's commercial liability, commercial property and development bonds markets from April 1. The U.S.-owned company wants to prioritize products and business lines aligned more closely to its wider business objectives.

Syncora Holdings Ltd. intends to merge with subsidiary Syncora Holdings US Inc. and adopt a liquidation plan. Both matters are subject to approval from shareholders at a special general meeting Jan. 28.

Assured Guaranty Ltd. downplayed the U.S. Supreme Court declining to hear its appeal of a lower court's decision regarding payment of special revenues. The First Circuit Court of Appeals had ruled that the U.S. Bankruptcy Code permits, but does not require, continued payment of special revenues by a debtor while bankruptcy proceedings are pending.

State Farm Ventures has made a "significant investment" in Cape Analytics, a provider of geospatial property data. Atlanta-based Fintech Ventures Fund invested an undisclosed sum in battleface Inc., a technology-enabled insurance startup.

Talbot Underwriting Ltd.'s chief underwriting officer, James Skinner, will retire in the summer of this year, Insurance Insider reported. Chubb Ltd. appointed Suresh Krishnan COO of its accident and health business in U.S. and Canada. Arch Capital Group Ltd. has promoted Chris Hovey to COO, Reinsurance News reported. Stewart Information Services Corp. President Matthew Morris is leaving the company, effective Jan. 15.

In Florida, Avatar Partners LP, parent of Avatar Property & Casualty Insurance Co., is acquiring Centauri Specialty Insurance Co.

Sedgwick Claims Management Services Inc. acquired software-as-a-service provider G&E Enterprises.

Misr Insurance Holding Co. partnered with Banque Misr (SAE) and National Bank of Egypt (SAE) to launch a new takaful insurance company, Zawya reported.

The year 2019 was the second-hottest year on record as average global surface temperatures followed a long-term upward trend, NASA and the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reported.

Indonesian State-Owned Enterprises Minister Erick Thohir disclosed that the government intends to create a holding company in mid-February to inject funds into ailing PT Asuransi Jiwasraya (Persero), The Jakarta Post reported. The newspaper also reported that five people have been detained for being part of alleged corruption in the state-owned insurer.

Now featured on S&P Global Market Intelligence

Count of Florida-based insurers in post-Demotech-warning deals grows to 4: Fallout from Demotech's cautionary statements regarding potential downgrades to financial stability ratings for some Florida-focused property insurers continues to emerge in the form of multiple M&A deals.

Certain perils becoming pricier, harder to cover as climate risks grow: Zurich's chief risk officer said some risks are getting harder to cover, or are becoming uninsurable altogether, as climate change concerns dominate the World Economic Forum's global risks rankings.

In other parts of the world

Asia-Pacific: MUFG to get new head; Australia raises levies on financial firms

Europe: TSB enlists IBM for IT revamp; Latvia OKs sale of Danske's unit to Citadele

Middle East & Africa: Fitch affirms UAE banks; Bank Muscat FY'19 profit up; Allianz Cameroon names CEO

The day ahead

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

In Asia, the Hang Seng gained 0.38% to 28,883.04, while the Nikkei 225 was up 0.07% to 23,933.13.

In Europe, around midday, the FTSE 100 was down 0.43% to 7,609.75, and the Euronext 100 decreased 0.10% to 1,156.67.

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 jobless claims report, the Philadelphia Fed business outlook survey, the retail sales report, the import and export prices report, the business inventories report, the housing market index, the EIA natural gas report, the treasury international capital, the Fed balance sheet and the money supply report are due out today.

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