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Announcement:

Moody's affirms RGA's credit ratings, senior debt at Baa1

02 Jun 2008
Moody's affirms RGA's credit ratings, senior debt at Baa1

Approximately $1 billion of securities affected

New York, June 02, 2008 -- Moody's Investors Service has affirmed the credit rating of Reinsurance Group of America, Inc. - (NYSE:RGA) following the company's announcement that MetLife, Inc. (MetLife; NYSE MET) would split-off, on a tax-free basis, essentially all of its majority owned stake of RGA . The outlook for the ratings is stable.

The transaction, which is expected to close in the third quarter of 2008, entails RGA recapitalizing its common stock into two classes. Class A shares will be held by existing minority shareholders and will have 20% voting rights with respect to the election of directors, while Class B shares which represent essentially all of MetLife's ownership stake, will be held by MetLife and will have 80% voting rights with respect to the election of directors. Following this recapitalization, MetLife will offer the RGA Class B shares to MetLife shareholders in exchange for shares of MetLife common stock. The transaction is subject to RGA shareholder approval, the tender of a sufficient number of MetLife shares, and certain regulatory approvals.

Commenting on the ratings of RGA, Moody's says the Baa1 senior debt rating was the company's stand-alone rating and incorporated the rating agency's view that the RGA reinsurance business was non-core to MetLife's operations. The rating agency added that the rating reflects the company's strong market position in the North American life reinsurance industry, its status as a key player in facultative reinsurance and its expertise in managing mortality risk as demonstrated by the company's performance in its core domestic operations. According to the rating agency, RGA has increased its domestic market share by successfully integrating a block of business it acquired from Allianz in 2003. In addition, Moody's noted that RGA has opportunities for international expansion in selected markets, although the rating agency added that growth in international and non-traditional businesses presents additional monitoring, regulatory, political and structuring risks.

According to the rating agency, RGA's strengths are somewhat offset by the relatively higher volatility in reinsurance results. Moody's also noted that RGA Reinsurance Company has had low statutory earnings, partly driven by statutory strain related to growth. The rating agency added that it is concerned that the pace of continued mortality improvements could slow, and commented that domestic growth could also slow, given the current high level of new life insurance business being reinsured. In addition, Moody's noted that RGA has moderate financial leverage and has exposure to catastrophic risks and terrorist events.

The following ratings were affirmed with a stable outlook:

Reinsurance Group of America, Inc -- senior unsecured debentures at Baa1, subordinated debt at (P)Baa2; junior subordinated debt at Baa3; preferred stock at (P)Baa3.

RGA Capital Trust I - Preferred stock at Baa2.

RGA Capital Trust II - Preferred stock at (P)Baa2.

RGA Capital Trust III - Preferred stock at (P)Baa2.

RGA Capital Trust IV - Preferred stock at (P)Baa2.

RGA Reinsurance Company -- Insurance financial strength at A1.

Moody's last rating action on RGA was on March 6, 2007 when the rating agency assigned a Baa1 rating to the company's $300 million senior unsecured notes.

Reinsurance Group of America, Inc., headquartered in Chesterfield, Missouri, reported total assets of approximately $21.8 billion and shareholders' equity of $3.1 billion as of March 31, 2008.

Moody's insurance financial strength ratings are opinions on the ability of insurance companies to repay punctually senior policyholder claims and obligations.

For more information, visit our website at www.moodys.com/insurance.

New York
Robert Riegel
Managing Director
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's Investors Service
JOURNALISTS: 212-553-0376
SUBSCRIBERS: 212-553-1653

New York
Ann G. Perry
VP - Senior Credit Officer
Financial Institutions Group
Moody's Investors Service
JOURNALISTS: 212-553-0376
SUBSCRIBERS: 212-553-1653

No Related Data.
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