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Rating Action:

Moody's affirms Generali's ratings (Aa3 IFSR) with stable outlook

23 Mar 2009

London, 23 March 2009 -- Moody's Investors Service today affirmed the Aa3 insurance financial strength, A1 senior unsecured debt, A2 subordinated debt and A3 preferred debt ratings of Assicurazioni Generali S.p.A. ("Generali") and its main operating subsidiaries following the release of the company's 2008 results. A complete list of ratings follows below. All of these ratings carry a stable outlook.

Moody's has also withdrawn the ratings of Volksfuersorge Deutsche Lebensversicherung AG and Volksfuersorge Deutsche Sachversicherung AG in Germany following their merger into Generali Lebensversicherung AG and Generali Versicherung AG, respectively.

Moody's affirmation of Generali's ratings reflects the group's robust underlying performance, which benefits from a balanced business mix between Life and P&C and strong geographic diversification throughout Europe. "Despite the significant reduction in bottom-line results as a consequence of EUR5.0 billion of financial impairments in 2008 and continuing market volatility in 2009, we expect Generali to maintain solid underlying profits in the future thanks to its very strong and resilient franchise in Europe and relatively prudent investment portfolio", comments Moody's lead analyst for the group, Antonello Aquino.

Generali reported an 18% reduction in its operating profit in 2008 to EUR3.9 billion, which included EUR3.1 billion of financial impairments, and a 70% decline in bottom-line profit to EUR0.9 billion as a result of total financial impairments of EUR5.0 billion. The impairments mainly stemmed from equity concentrations in the Life operation. "The overall robust operating performance of the group was sustained by Generali's multi-channel approach, which allowed the proprietary channel to offset the underperformance of the bancassurance sector, especially in Italy, and by the balanced business mix between Life and P&C," adds Mr. Aquino. The non-Life operating results represented over 50% of the group's total operating profit in 2008 and resulted in a combined ratio (CoR) of 96.4% (95.8% in 2007); Moody's also notes the growing contribution of Central and Eastern Europe to the P&C profitability.

Shareholders' equity, including minorities, stood at EUR15.5 billion at the end of 2008, a 16% reduction compared with the end of 2007. Moody's understands that, on a Solvency I basis, coverage was 123% at the end of 2008 compared with 143% at the end of 2007 and was adversely affected in equal measure by the acquisitions of Ceska and Banca del Gottardo and by the underperformance of the financial markets.

Generali's investment portfolio is relatively prudent, with equity investment representing less than 8% of the total (around 6.5% when taking hedging into account) and with the majority of the fixed income portfolio invested in highly rated government bonds. Nevertheless, following Generali's acquisitions in 2008, the group has an increasing amount of goodwill, which Moody's views as relatively high for the current rating level.

In addition, Moody's notes the group's very good liquidity position, with a total cash and cash equivalent position of over EUR10.5 billion at the end of 2008 and a strong Life net inflow of over EUR7.0 billion in 2008. Furthermore, in early 2009, the company successfully refinanced EUR750 million of senior debt and the EUR500 million of subordinated debt callable in May 2009. Nevertheless, an additional EUR1.750 billion of senior debt will need to be refinanced by July 2010.

Financial leverage is expected to have increased slightly in 2008 as a result of decreasing shareholder's equity, but, together with the five-year average fixed charge coverage, Moody's still views this as being at a good level. Nevertheless, the rating agency will continue to closely monitor the development of the company's financial flexibility going forward, in particular in light of the 2010 refinancing needs, and a deterioration in financial leverage and interest coverage would exert pressure on the current rating level.

The stable outlook is driven by Moody's expectation that the underlying profitability of Generali's core operations will continue to offset the potential impact of financial volatility on its investment portfolio, global recessionary pressures and growing competition, in particular in the motor business in some P&C markets in Europe. With regard to rating drivers going forward, Moody's says that a material reduction in solvency and operating performance (e.g. CoR approaching 100%) and/or a material deterioration in the group's financial flexibility (e.g. financial leverage of over 35% on a long term basis) may contribute to negative rating pressure. In addition, the rating agency will continue to monitor the impact on the group's business profile of strategic initiatives initiated in Italy and Germany and the steps undertaken to refinance the senior bond with maturity in 2010.

The following insurance financial strength ratings were affirmed with a stable outlook:

Assicurazioni Generali S.p.A, Aa3

Generali Deutschland Holding AG (previously named AMB Generali Holding AG), Aa3

AachenMuenchener Lebensversicherung AG, Aa3

AachenMuenchener Versicherung AG, Aa3

Advocard Rechtschutzversicherung AG, Aa3

Generali Deutschland Pensionskasse AG (previously named AMB Generali Pensionskasse AG), Aa3

Central Krankenversicherung AG, Aa3

Cosmos Lebensversicherungs-AG, Aa3

Cosmos Versicherung AG, Aa3

Dialog Lebensversicherungs-AG, Aa3

Envivas Krankenversicherung AG, Aa3

Generali Lebensversicherung AG, Aa3

Generali Versicherung AG, Aa3

Generali IARD, Aa3

Generali Vie, Aa3

Ceska Pojistovna a.s., A3

The following debt ratings were affirmed with a stable outlook:

Assicurazioni Generali S.p.A., Senior debt rating, A1

Assicurazioni Generali S.p.A., Subordinated debt rating, A2

Assicurazioni Generali S.p.A., Preferred stock debt rating, A3

Generali Finance B.V., Senior Unsecured debt rating (backed), A1

Generali Finance B.V., Subordinated Debt rating (backed), A2

Generali Finance B.V.,Preferred Debt rating (Junior Subordinate), A3

The following ratings were withdrawn:

Volksfuersorge Deutsche Lebensversicherung AG, insurance financial strength rating (IFSR), Aa3

Volksfuersorge Deutsche Sachversicherung AG, insurance financial strength rating (IFSR), Aa3

The following ratings were affirmed and remain under review for possible downgrade:

Generali Garant, Ba3 foreign currency insurance financial strength rating (IFSR) and Baa2 local currency IFSR (Insurance Financial Strength--National Scale Aaa.ua) on review for possible downgrade

Moody's last rating action on Generali was implemented on 20 November 2007 when its ratings were affirmed and the outlook was changed to stable from negative.

The principal methodologies used in rating Generali and its subsidiaries are "Moody's Global Rating Methodology for Property and Casualty Insurers" and "Moody's Global Rating Methodology for Life Insurers", which can be found at www.moodys.com in the Credit Policy & Methodologies directory, in the Ratings Methodologies sub-directory. Other methodologies and factors that may have been considered in the process of rating these issuers can also be found in the Credit Policy & Methodologies directory.

Generali Assicurazioni S.p.A., headquartered in Trieste, Italy, is a major international multi-line insurer. It reported gross premiums written of €64.6 billion in 2008 and shareholders' equity including minorities of EUR15.5 billion at 31 December 2008.

London
Antonello Aquino
VP - Senior Credit Officer
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's Investors Service Ltd.
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454

Paris
Benjamin Serra
Analyst
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's France S.A.
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454

Moody's affirms Generali's ratings (Aa3 IFSR) with stable outlook
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