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August 2007/3

  • Lloyd’s investment vehicle Hampden Underwriting plc (HUP) is planning an August float on the London Stock Exchange’s Alternative Investment Market (AIM) in a bid to raise £15mn.
  • Despite signs earlier in the year that demand was drying up for the vehicles, a new model of sidecar is emerging, with the recent launch of Mont Gele Re and Emerson Re.
  • Insurance stocks remain volatile as a result of erratic trading on global financial markets, which saw most major indices plummet.
  • UK Bank HBOS plc has appointed the Aon UK chief operating officer Philip Gore-Randall to join the firm as part of a wider restructuring of its management.
  • Highly leveraged insurance brokers and service providers are subject to high credit risk and may face downgrades, rating agency Moody’s Investor Services warned last week.
  • French (re)insurance giant AXA reported strong first half results for 2007 on a comparable basis with 2006, boosted further by the successful integration of Winterthur.
  • UK (re)insurer Aviva reported heavy losses of £235mn for the UK floods in June, dwarfing those of competitor Royal & Sun Alliance (R&SA), which reported flood losses of £55mn for the second quarter.
  • German (re)insurance group, Allianz has raised its estimate for the UK’s summer floods by EUR135mn to EUR158mn in total for June and July.
  • “Class of 2005” start-up Flagstone Reinsurance Holdings Ltd reported Q2 profits hit by $31mn losses from the UK floods in June and $23.5mn from the Australian storm and flooding.
  • Marsh & McLennan Companies Inc (MMC) reported slow second quarter revenue growth in its broking division as new business wins were offset by the softening commercial (re)insurance market.
  • The independent UK broker Heath Lambert Group plc has appointed corporate financiers Hawkpoint Partners to advise on options which could involve a refinancing to pay down debt and raise capital or a complete sale, The Insurance Insider revealed last week.
  • Bermudian Arch Capital Group has struck back at Gen Re in the latest round of the legal dispute over the departure of four Gen Re executives to Arch in April.
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