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December 2003/3

  • A number of significant commutations and buy-back settlements have reduced Equitas’ reinsurance income, the run-off reinsurer revealed last week when publishing its six months summary financial income.
  • There was more insurance industry courtroom drama last week with a mammoth case management conference for the film finance litigation.
  • Marketform Acquisition Company Limited has attracted £15mn of equity finance from Caledonia Investments plc as it continues to capitalise on the strong rates for non-US medical malpractice and other specialty liability insurance.
  • Swiss Re has launched Vita Capital Ltd, the first ever bond securitising life reinsurance risk instead of retrocessional cover.
  • At last week’s Bermuda Angle conference, XL Capital announced it expects to earn between $9.05-9.25 per share for 2004, slightly down on consensus estimates of $9.28.
  • Bermudian reinsurer Renaissance Re said last week that it expects to earn between $6.10 and $6.50 per share in 2004, reflecting falling premium growth in property catastrophe business against moderating growth in specialty reinsurance and individual risk.
  • Bermudian giant ACE last week announced plans to spin off its financial guaranty business next year in a New York IPO. ACE said it will offer 65-75 percent of its interest in the new company.
  • London based insurer Catlin Group has appointed JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs and UBS to advise on a 2004 IPO, according to reports last week.
  • Aspen Re – the spun-off Bermudian arm of Wellington Underwriting – announced last Wednesday (3 December) that it had exceeded expectations in achieving a $22.50 price for its New York IPO.
  • The promotion of Donald Kanak as AIG’s joint vice chairman and co-chief operating officer has muddied the succession issue of Maurice “Hank” Greenberg, the septuagenarian patriarch of the world’s most valuable insurance company.
  • Liability start-up Illium began trading last week, issuing quotes for risks which attach from 1 January 2004.
  • Reinsurance focussed Lloyd’s insurer Liberty Syndicates continued its rapid advance last week when confirming that 2004 capacity will be £793mn – making it one of the largest Lloyd’s managing agencies behind Limit, Amlin and Hiscox.
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