AM Best Assigns Ratings to First Berkshire Hathaway Life Insurance Company

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AM Best Assigns Ratings to First Berkshire Hathaway Life Insurance Company
News from The Herald | HeraldOnline.com:

A.M. Best Co. has assigned a financial strength rating of A+ (Superior) and an issuer credit rating of “aa-” to First Berkshire Hathaway Life Insurance Company (FBHL) (New York, NY). The outlook assigned to both ratings is stable.

The ratings reflect FBHL’s adequate risk-adjusted capitalization, the explicit support provided by its affiliate, Columbia Insurance Company, as well as the benefits made available though its ultimate parent, Berkshire Hathaway Inc. FBHL offers annuities principally to fund structured settlements to New York state residents and others desiring fixed annuities issued by a New York-domiciled life insurer.

Offsetting rating factors include FBHL’s limited business profile and a lack of product and investment diversification. Earnings growth also may be pressured due to new business strain and the current low interest rate environment.

Upward rating actions for FBHL could be driven by further integration with the immediate parent company, Berkshire Hathaway Life Insurance Company of Nebraska, and continued new business growth.

Key rating drivers that may lead to negative rating actions include a material deterioration in FBHL’s operating performance, lack of capital support from any parent c…………… continues on The Herald | HeraldOnline.com

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TEXT-S&P summary: Ping An Property & Casualty Insurance Co. of China Ltd.
News from Reuters:

Fri Sep 21, 2012 6:52am EDT

We consider Ping An P&C to be a core member of the Ping An Group. We assess the company’s credit profile together with the wider group credit profile. The group includes Ping An Life Insurance Co. Ltd. (not rated), China’s second-largest life insurer based on gross premiums in 2011. The group also has a majority stake in Ping An Bank Co. Ltd. (not rated).

In our view, Ping An P&C’s credit profile is stronger than that of the overall group. The ratings reflect our consideration of the company’s strong stand-alone credit profile and the separate regulatory regimes for insurance companies and banks in China.

Ping An P&C’s strong brand name and diversified distribution channels support its solid competitive position in the Chinese non-life insurance market. It had a market share of 17.4% in terms of total premiums in 2011 and was the second-largest non-life insurer in China. However, similar to its local peers, Ping An P&C’s business is concentrated (at about 80%) in motor insurance. The company is also exposed to the risk of unexpected catastrophes and operational setbacks.


continues on Reuters

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