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August 2008/3

  • Costs in sterling and revenues in dollars has been the awkward position for many London-based brokers so the deteriorating pound is providing a welcome fillip.
  • Willis's recently acquired London market broking subsidiary Glencairn, part of the $2.1bn Hilb Rogal & Hobbs takeover, is set to be the core of a new, predominantly wholesale broker Faber Dumas, The Insurance Insider understands.
  • US insurer Allstate Corp has agreed to pay Florida regulators a $5mn fine and granted an additional 5.6 percent rate cut to the state's homeowners as part of its settlement with the jurisdiction.
  • Lloyd's insurer Hiscox Ltd has posted a rise in pre-tax profits with reserve releases, a solid investment performance and strong underwriting returns defying the gloom of the soft market and credit crunch.
  • Tropical Storm Fay is expected to reach hurricane strength after crossing western Cuba and is on track to hit Florida later today (18 August), according to forecasters at Tropical Storm Risk.
  • Bermudian headquartered Flagstone Reinsurance Holdings Ltd is to centralise its operating platform in Switzerland in a bid to maximise capital efficiency and take advantage of forthcoming passport rights.
  • Benfield Group Ltd received a boost last week after Merrill Lynch upgraded the stock to "Buy" following its solid first-half year results.
  • RSA Insurance Group plc's strong results last week have once again fuelled speculation that it could be the subject of a takeover bid.
  • When Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) put its insurance division up for sale in April, few could have predicted that four months on there would be only one genuine suitor with a circa £5bn offer on the table.
  • Ratings agency Standard & Poor's revised its outlook for the US commercial lines and property & casualty (P&C) sector to negative last week on the back of continued price softening and declining investment returns.
  • Risk Management Solutions (RMS) has launched new winter storm and severe convective storm models for North America to assess losses from different weather events.
  • Bermudian reinsurer RenaissanceRe Holdings Ltd has terminated its retrocessional sidecar Starbound Reinsurance II Ltd.
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