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20 Aug 2001
MOODY'S RATES LEAD MEMBERS OF XL CAPITAL GROUP Aa2; UPGRADES XL REINSURANCE AMERICA AND AFFILIATES
Leading Bermuda-based International Insurer and Reinsurer.
New York, August 20, 2001 -- Moody's Investors Service has assigned Aa2 insurance financial strength
ratings (outlooks: stable) to XL Insurance Ltd and XL Re Ltd -
the principal Bermuda-based insurance and reinsurance subsidiaries,
respectively, of XL Capital Ltd. Additionally, Moody's
has upgraded the insurance financial strength ratings of XL Reinsurance
America Inc. (XLRA) and members of the XL America intercompany
reinsurance pool, to Aa2 (outlooks: stable) from A1 (previous
outlooks: positive), and has confirmed the A2 senior unsecured
debt rating of NAC Re Corporation (outlook: stable).
According to Moody's, the Aa2 ratings on XL Insurance Ltd (XLI)
and XL Re Ltd (XL Re) consider the companies' strong competitive profiles
in international commercial and specialty lines insurance and reinsurance,
and their integral role within the core business strategy of XL Capital
Ltd - which is focused on insurance, reinsurance, and
specialty financial services. Moody's added that the ratings also
contemplate the benefits of business risk and earnings diversification
that XLI and XL Re receive through intercompany reinsurance agreements
with certain of their major US, European, and Bermuda-based
affiliates, and their strong financial profiles with respect to
investments, reserves and risk management, and capitalization.
The rating agency also noted the moderate leverage profile, business
diversity, sound capitalization, and strong risk management
orientation of the insurers' ultimate Bermuda-based parent,
XL Capital Ltd (NYSE: XL).
Specifically, XL Insurance Ltd's rating reflects its strong competitive
position as a leading underwriter of excess corporate liability,
directors' and officers' and other specialty property, liability
and financial classes of insurance for large corporate clients -
many of which have been policyholders since XLI's inception in the mid-1980s.
Additionally, Moody's noted as credit positives XLI's minimal exposures
to asbestos and environmental-related liabilities because of its
relatively recent formation, its significantly broadened business
mix and the reduced intrinsic volatility of its underwriting risk profile
as a result of its decision in recent years to reduce its net policy limits.
Increasingly, as XL Capital has broadened its insurance operations
internationally - most recently through the acquisition of the
Winterthur International operations - XLI has deployed some of
its capital through direct investment and/or the establishment of intercompany
reinsurance agreements. Moody's added that partly offsetting XLI's
significant fundamental strengths is the inherent volatility of excess
insurance coverages, and challenging - but significantly
improving - competitive conditions in international commercial
and specialty lines insurance.
With respect to XL Re Ltd, Moody's noted that XL Re's rating reflects
its broadened platform in international reinsurance - both directly
and through its coordination with XLRA, Latin American Re Company
Ltd. and other XL Capital affiliates, and its strengthened
broker market recognition, its increasingly diversified business
mix - which focuses on excess of loss treaty and facultative property,
liability, marine, aviation and financial lines, in
addition to its original core property/catastrophe operations.
Like XLI, XL Re has broadened its operations internationally -
most notably through the 1999 acquisition of NAC Reinsurance Corporation
(recently renamed XL Reinsurance America Inc.) - and has
deployed some of its capital through both direct investment and the establishment
of intercompany reinsurance agreements. Moody's added that partly
offsetting XL Re's significant fundamental strengths is the inherent volatility
of the property catastrophe excess of loss reinsurance - which
continued to be a significant contributor to XL Re's earnings, and
stiff - but again significantly improving - competitive
conditions in international reinsurance.
According to Moody's, the upgrade of the insurance financial strength
ratings of XLRA and members of its intercompany reinsurance pool reflect
Moody's favorable view of the ongoing strategic coordination of the US
insurance and reinsurance operations of XLRA and its primary insurance
subsidiaries with XL Re and XLI in Bermuda. This process is evidenced
by the extension of the XL global brand to XLRA and other group members,
by the use of intercompany quota share reinsurance to spread and manage
underwriting risk and capital more broadly across the XL group,
and through the identification of XLRA and other entities within the XL
group as centers of expertise as the group seeks to broaden its product
offerings in international insurance and reinsurance.
The confirmation of the senior debt rating of NAC Re Corporation reflects
the relative structural subordination of that company's senior unsecured
creditors to those of its ultimate parent - XL Capital Ltd -
and to the policyholder liabilities of XL America's and its affiliates'
insurance and reinsurance subsidiaries.
The following ratings have been assigned:
XL Insurance Ltd - insurance financial strength at Aa2 (outlook:
XL Re Ltd - insurance financial strength at Aa2 (outlook:
Insurance financial strength ratings for the following members of the
XL America intercompany pool have been upgraded to Aa2 (outlooks:
stable) from A1:
XL Reinsurance America Inc.;
Greenwich Insurance Company;
Indian Harbor Insurance Company;
XL Specialty Insurance Company;
XL Insurance Company of New York, Inc.
The following rating has been confirmed:
NAC Re Corporation - senior unsecured debt at A2 (outlook:
XL Capital Ltd (NYSE:XL), headquartered in Bermuda,
is a leading provider of insurance, reinsurance, and specialty
financial products worldwide through subsidiaries in Bermuda, the
United States, Europe, and elsewhere. XL Capital's
principal operating units include XL Insurance Ltd, XL Re Ltd,
XL Financial Assurance Ltd., XL Capital Assurance,
Inc., the XL Brockbank Group Plc, XL Europe and the
recently acquired Winterthur International companies. As of June
30, 2001 XL Capital Ltd reported year-to-date consolidated
revenues of $1.56 billion and net income of $347.5
VP - Senior Credit Officer
Insurance & Reinsurance
Moody's Investors Service
JOURNALISTS: (212) 553-0376
SUBSCRIBERS: (212) 553-1653
Insurance & Reinsurance
Moody's Investors Service
JOURNALISTS: (212) 553-0376
SUBSCRIBERS: (212) 553-1653
No Related Data.
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