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Insurance ratings actions: S&P affirms Hanover Insurance, Irish subsidiary

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.

Property and casualty

A.M. Best assigned a financial strength rating of B++ (Good) and a long-term issuer credit rating of "bbb" to Florida-based Southern Guaranty Insurance Co.

The outlook assigned to these ratings is stable.

The ratings reflect Southern Guaranty's very strong balance sheet, adequate operating performance, limited business profile and marginal enterprise risk management.

The ratings also take into account the business plans of the company, its experienced management team and the near-term earnings prospects to be derived from existing partner relationships.

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Fitch Ratings Indonesia assigned Indonesia-based reinsurer PT Asuransi Eka Lloyd Jaya a national insurer financial strength rating of A-(idn).

The outlook is stable.

Fitch said A national insurer financial strength ratings denote a strong capacity to meet policyholder obligations relative to all other obligations or issuers in the same country, across all industries and obligation types. However, changes in circumstances or economic conditions may affect the capacity for payment of policyholder obligations to a greater degree than for financial commitments denoted by a higher rated category.

The rating reflects the company's small market franchise, strong capitalization, moderately weak underwriting performance, conservative investment approach and mitigation of catastrophe risks through reinsurance.

The stable outlook reflects Fitch's expectation that Eka Lloyd Jaya will continue to maintain an ample capital buffer, as well as its prudent underwriting approach and reinsurance management to support its business operations.

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Fitch Ratings Indonesia revised the outlook on Indonesia-based PT Asuransi Asei Indonesia's national insurer financial strength rating to negative from stable and affirmed the rating at AA-(idn).

Fitch said AA national insurer financial strength ratings denote a very strong capacity to meet policyholder obligations relative to all other obligations or issuers in the same country, across all industries and obligation types. The risk of ceased or interrupted payments differs only slightly from the country's highest rated obligations or issuers.

The revision of the outlook reflects the increased vulnerability of the company's credit strength following weak underwriting results in 2017. In addition, Asei's capitalization remains moderately weak.

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S&P Global Ratings affirmed its A long-term ratings on Massachusetts-based Hanover Insurance Group Inc. and removed them from CreditWatch with negative implications.

The outlook is negative.

At the same time, S&P affirmed its A- long-term rating on Irish subsidiary Chaucer Insurance Co. DAC. The rating remains on CreditWatch with developing implications. S&P placed Hanover Insurance on CreditWatch negative on April 2 after the group announced that it was considering a sale of its international specialty insurance business Chaucer.

The negative outlook indicates that S&P could lower its ratings on the company, assuming a Chaucer sale occurs, in the next 18 to 24 months if the group's U.S. operating performance lags behind A rated peers.

This S&P Global Market Intelligence news article may contain information about credit ratings issued by S&P Global Ratings, a separately managed division of S&P Global. Descriptions in this news article were not prepared by S&P Global Ratings. The original S&P Global Ratings documents referred to in this news brief can be found here.

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