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Insurance ratings actions: A.M. Best removes Validus from under review

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.

US and Canada

A.M. Best revised the outlooks to stable from negative and affirmed the financial strength ratings of A+ and the long-term issuer credit ratings of "aa-" of Bermuda-based Arch Reinsurance Ltd. and its strategic affiliates.

The affiliates are Arch Reinsurance Co., Arch Insurance Co., Arch Specialty Insurance Co., Arch Excess and Surplus Insurance Co., Arch Indemnity Insurance Co., Arch Insurance Canada Ltd., Alwyn Insurance Co. Ltd. and Arch Insurance Co. (Europe) Ltd.

A.M. Best also revised the outlooks to stable from negative and affirmed the long-term issuer credit ratings of "a-" of the ultimate holding company, Arch Capital Group Ltd., and Arch Capital Group (U.S.) Inc. and Arch Capital Finance LLC.

The ratings reflect Arch Reinsurance's balance sheet strength, which A.M. Best categorizes as strongest, strong operating performance, favorable business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management.

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A.M. Best removed from under review with developing implications and affirmed the long-term issuer credit ratings of "bbb" of Bermuda-based Validus Holdings Ltd.

The agency also removed from under review with developing implications and affirmed the financial strength ratings of A and the long-term issuer credit ratings of "a" of Validus Reinsurance Ltd. and its affiliate, Validus Reinsurance (Switzerland) Ltd.

The outlook assigned to these ratings is stable. Concurrently, A.M. Best withdrew the ratings of Validus Holdings at the company's request to no longer participate in the rating process.

These ratings actions follow the close of American International Group Inc.'s acquisition of Validus Holdings and its subsidiaries in July.

The ratings of Validus Reinsurance reflect its balance sheet strength, which A.M. Best categorizes as strongest, adequate operating performance, neutral business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management.

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A.M. Best removed from under review with developing implications and affirmed the financial strength ratings of A+ and the long-term issuer credit ratings of "aa-" of Lansing, Mich.-based Jackson National Life Insurance Co.; its wholly owned subsidiary, Jackson National Life Insurance Co. of New York; and its direct parent, Brooke Life Insurance Co.

The outlook assigned to these ratings is stable.

The ratings were placed under review in March, following the announcement by parent Prudential PLC that it intends to demerge its U.K. and Europe business from Prudential, resulting in two separately traded companies.

The affirmations reflect the group's adequate balance sheet strength, strong operating performance, favorable business profile and very strong enterprise risk management.

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A.M. Best affirmed the long-term issuer credit rating of "bbb-" of Greenlight Capital Re Ltd.

Additionally, the agency affirmed the financial strength ratings of A- and the long-term issuer credit ratings of "a-" of subsidiaries Greenlight Reinsurance Ltd. and Greenlight Reinsurance Ireland Designated Activity Co. The outlook of these ratings is stable.

The ratings reflect the parent company's very strong balance sheet, marginal operating performance, neutral business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management.

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A.M. Best affirmed the financial strength ratings of A+ and the long-term issuer credit ratings of "aa-" of California Insurance Co., Continental Indemnity Co., Illinois Insurance Co., Texas Insurance Co. and Pennsylvania Insurance Co.

The outlook of these ratings remains stable.

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

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S&P Global Ratings revised the outlook on Canada-based Co-operators Financial Services Ltd. and its core operating life and property and casualty insurance subsidiaries to stable from positive.

The agency also affirmed the BBB long-term issuer credit rating on Co-operators, and the A- financial strength ratings on the subsidiaries.

S&P said that despite subsidiary Co-operator General's accelerated growth in a challenging P&C market, it expects underwriting performance for the P&C operations to lag behind the Canadian P&C market. The agency also said that more frequent weather-related losses continue to strain the bottom line.

Europe

A.M. Best assigned a financial strength rating of B++ and a long-term issuer credit rating of "bbb" to U.K.-based Irwell Insurance Co. Ltd. with a stable outlook.

The ratings reflect Irwell's strong balance sheet, adequate operating performance, limited business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management.

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Fitch Ratings affirmed the A long-term issuer default rating of Netherlands-based Achmea BV and the A+ insurer financial strength ratings of its core operating entities.

The entities are Achmea Pensioen-en Levensverzekeringen NV, Achmea Schadeverzekeringen NV and Achmea Zorgverzekeringen NV.

The outlooks are stable. Fitch noted Achmea's "very strong" business profile and capitalization but said that profitability and debt servicing capabilities are rating weaknesses.

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S&P withdrew the BBB long-term issuer credit rating on Italy-based Elba Assicurazioni SpA at the request of the company.

The outlook was stable. S&P maintained the BBB financial strength rating with a stable outlook on Elba Assicurazioni.

Middle East and Africa

A.M. Best affirmed the financial strength rating of A- and the long-term issuer credit rating of "a-" of Doha Insurance Group Q.P.S.C.

The outlook of these ratings is stable.

The ratings reflect the company's very strong balance sheet, strong operating performance, limited business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management.

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A.M. Best affirmed the financial strength rating of B+ and the long-term issuer credit rating of "bbb-" of United Arab Emirates-based Al Sagr National Insurance Co. PSC with a stable outlook.

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

Asia-Pacific

Fitch affirmed China-based Taikang Insurance Group Inc.'s long-term issuer default rating at A- and subsidiary Taikang Life Insurance Co. Ltd.'s insurer financial strength rating at A.

The outlook on both ratings remains negative.

Taikang Group's "adequate" capital position, "strong" business profile in terms of franchise and distribution network and "favorable" operating profitability factored into the affirmation.

The negative outlooks were due to the group's increased exposure to risky assets in 2017 and relatively high concentration risk associated with its long-term equity investments.

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 feature can be found here and here.

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