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April 2009/4

  • Broking giant Willis Group’s French-based affiliate, Gras Savoye & Cie, is reportedly looking at alternative investment solutions over a put option purchased by the former in 1997, which could oblige it to increase its stake in France’s largest broker...
  • Munich Re has checked its bullish stance on rate prospects, as the reinsurer's chairman described a "satisfactory" first quarter while acknowledging that its optimism late last year was still to filter through to widespread rating improvements.
  • Marsh is revamping its proposed facility with Berkshire Hathaway for Gulf of Mexico (GOM) windstorm risks in a bid to drum up interest, after receiving insufficient support from potential buyers to meet its planned launch date.
  • Max adds to Lloyd's platform with UW hires; Allied World bags Bermuda team from AIG; Brit recruits LM specialist for new role; RFIB appoints new IT head from Aon Benfield; Senior Marsh exec moves to JLT's Dubai office...
  • Lancashire Insurance Group is filling part of the growing void in Gulf of Mexico (GOM) windstorm cover by opening up its Octopus product to the wider market.
  • Alea Group chief executive Mark Cloutier will step down next year, the run-off (re)insurer confirmed last week (24 April).
  • Lloyd's is set for a gain after making a tender to repurchase up to £100mn of the approximate £1.1bn in long-term corporate debt it manages - which in turn forms part of the central assets the Society holds on behalf of the market.
  • After being buoyed by comments from the G7 group of most industrialised nations on Friday (24 April) that the world economy was showing early signs of recovery, global stock markets slipped downwards again this morning amid fears of a swine flu epidemic.
  • Short-term life business has never been a significant component of the Lloyd's mix and in recent years its share has shrunk even further.
  • UK independent broker Heath Lambert has lost another major account after rival firm AJ Gallagher (UK) captured French inter-dealer broker Viel & Cie (V&C), The Insurance Insider can reveal.
  • Lloyd's insurers will scour the UK Finance Bill 2009 upon publication (expected 30 April) for further details of how the tax deduction for equalisation reserves will be calculated.
  • Willis Group's first quarter results, due out this week, will be scrutinised carefully by investors for the performance of its US operations, following last year’s $2.1bn acquisition of Hilb, Rogal & Hobbs (HRH).
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