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Moody's revises outlooks of 2 Colombian insurers to negative

Moody's on Feb. 23 revised the outlooks on Seguros Generales Suramericana SA and Seguros De Vida Suramericana S.A.'s global scale insurance financial strength ratings to negative from stable, following the same action on Colombia's sovereign ratings.

At the same time, Moody's affirmed the companies' Baa2 global scale insurance financial strength ratings.

The rating agency said said the outlook revision reflects the likelihood that a downgrade on Colombia's sovereign bond rating could lead to a rating downgrade for both companies, due to the correlation between the insurers' credit ratings and that of the sovereign as the insurers have direct and indirect exposures to sovereign assets.

Moody's also noted that the negative outlooks "consider the incremental strain on insurance and systemic risk factors underlying the operating environment."

Meanwhile, Moody's also maintained the stable outlook on Compañía Aseguradora while affirming its Baa2 global scale insurance financial strength rating. The outlook reflects the rating agency's assessment that an eventual downgrade on the Colombian sovereign bond in itself will "not likely put significant downward pressure on the insurer's intrinsic business and financial fundamentals."