AM Best has upgraded the Financial Strength Rating (FSR) to A+ (Superior) from A (Excellent) and the Long-Term Issuer Credit Ratings (Long Term ICR) to “aa-” (Superior) from “a+” (Excellent) of the U.S. property/casualty (P/C) subsidiaries of Assurant, Inc. (Assurant) (headquartered in Atlanta, GA) [NYSE: AIZ]. These companies are collectively referred to as Assurant P&C Group (Assurant P&C). At the same time, AM Best has upgraded the Long-Term ICR to “a-” (Excellent) from “bbb+” (Good) and all associated Long-Term Issue Credit Ratings (Long-Term IR), indicative Long-Term IRs and the Short-Term IR of Assurant. The outlooks of all the above Credit Ratings (ratings) have been revised to stable from positive. (See below for a detailed list of the companies and Long- and Short-Term IRs.)
Concurrently, AM Best has affirmed the FSR of A (Excellent) and the Long-Term ICRs of “a” (Excellent) of Assurant’s credit and life/health (L/H) subsidiaries: American Bankers Life Assurance Company of Florida (Miami, FL) and Caribbean American Life Assurance Company (San Juan, PR) collectedly known as Assurant Lifestyle. The outlook of these ratings is stable.
The ratings of Assurant P&C’s reflect balance sheet strength, which AM Best assesses as very strong, as well as its strong operating performance, favorable business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management (ERM).
The rating upgrades of Assurant P&C reflect an improved assessment of the group’s balance sheet strength, which is currently assessed at very strong and is supported by risk-adjusted capitalization at the strongest level. This enhanced view of balance sheet strength also considers the group’s very strong earnings power, strong positive cash flows and new capital formation–the majority of which is derived from low-risk businesses, with limited volatility. Assurant’s property catastrophe exposure, which stems mostly from its lender placed homeowners’ business in global housing, is well-managed and adequately reinsured. Assurant’s operating performance has also benefited from earnings diversification and management’s strategy to partner with market leaders. As a result, Assurant P&C consistently outperformed its peers and generated superior returns on capital.
The ratings of Assurant Lifestyle reflect its balance sheet strength, which AM Best assesses as very strong, as well as its strong operating performance, limited business profile and appropriate ERM. Assurant Lifestyle also receives one level of rating enhancement from its affiliate, Assurant P&C, as it is considered important to the Assurant brand as a licensed credit life and credit accident & health insurer business.
The FSR has been upgraded to A+ (Superior) from A (Excellent) and the Long-Term ICRs to “aa-” (Superior) from “a+” (Excellent) with outlooks revised to stable from positive for the following P/C subsidiaries of Assurant, Inc.:
- American Bankers Insurance Company of Florida
- American Security Insurance Company
- Standard Guaranty Insurance Company
- Caribbean American Property Insurance Company
- Voyager Indemnity Insurance Company
- Virginia Surety Company, Inc.
- Reliable Lloyds Insurance Company
The following Short-Term IR has been upgraded:
-- to AMB-1+ (Strongest) from AMB-1 (Outstanding) on commercial paper
The following Long-Term IRs have been upgraded, with outlooks revised to stable from positive:
-- to “a-” (Excellent) from “bbb+” (Good) on USD 300 million 4.90% senior unsecured bonds, due 2028
-- to “a-” (Excellent) from “bbb+” (Good) on USD 300 million 4.20% senior unsecured bonds, due 2023 (USD $50 million outstanding)
-- to “a-” (Excellent) from “bbb+” (Good) on USD 350 million 3.70% senior unsecured bonds, due 2030
-- to “a-” (Excellent) from “bbb+” (Good) on USD 475 million 6.75% senior unsecured bonds, due 2034 (USD 275 million outstanding)
-- to “bbb+” (Good) from “bbb” (Good) on USD 400 million 7.00% subordinated bonds, due 2048
-- to “bbb+” (Good) from “bbb” (Good) on USD 250 million 5.25% subordinated bonds, due 2061
The following indicative Long-Term IRs on securities available under the shelf registration have been upgraded, with outlooks revised to stable from positive:
-- to “a-” (Excellent) from “bbb+” (Good) on senior unsecured
-- to “bbb+” (Good) from “bbb” (Good) on subordinated debt
-- to “bbb” (Good) from “bbb-” (Good) on preferred stock
This press release relates to Credit Ratings that have been published on AM Best’s website. For all rating information relating to the release and pertinent disclosures, including details of the office responsible for issuing each of the individual ratings referenced in this release, please see AM Best’s Recent Rating Activity web page. For additional information regarding the use and limitations of Credit Rating opinions, please view Guide to Best's Credit Ratings. For information on the proper use of Best’s Credit Ratings, Best’s Performance Assessments, Best’s Preliminary Credit Assessments and AM Best press releases, please view Guide to Proper Use of Best’s Ratings & Assessments.
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