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June 2005/5

  • Hardy underwriting has announced the termination of merger talks with fellow Lloyd’s insurer Omega.
  • French reinsurer SCOR has successfully raised a total of EUR233.2mn from the issue of 149.5 million shares (after full exercise of over-allotment option), with the majority of the gross proceeds going to buy back the remaining shares of Irish subsidiary I
  • Lloyd’s liability specialist Illium Insurance is set to expand into commercial motor insurance next year after recruiting former Equity Red Star underwriter John Shepherd.
  • Lloyd’s insurer Kiln has said today (27 June) that it continues to see good trading conditions in 2005, with renewal rating levels at 98.4 percent of the equivalent price a year ago.
  • Lloyd’s listed insurer Hiscox last week (21 June) described rates as “strongly profitable”, despite more competitive conditions, but said that it is likely to reduce capacity on its Syndicate 33 for next year, from £775mn to £650mn.
  • Barbados-based Imagine has had its A- financial strength rating and a- credit rating put on negative outlook by AM Best following a review of the reinsurer’s acquisition of Danish Re and current uncertainty surrounding the finite reinsurance market.
  • As the market continues to soften, a divide is emerging among European reinsurers, with stronger companies unencumbered by recent problems outpacing their peers, according to Benfield’s latest quarterly report on the sector.
  • European non-life insurers are set for record profits in 2005, according to the latest quarterly report from ratings agency Standard & Poor's (S&P), entitled “Industry Report Card: European Insurance”.
  • German reinsurer Munich Re Group has elaborated on its financial position. At an investors’ conference today in London it said the Group's available financial resources had increased by EUR1.9bn to EUR22.6bn in the business year 2004. At the same time, th
  • Spanish insurance group Mapfre bought the UK intermediary Abraxus last week for £10.5mn.
  • US insurance giant St Paul Travelers revealed last week that it had entered into a settlement agreement with the Kemper Insurance Companies over a disastrous surety bond contract which has gone at least five times over its original estimates.
  • UK broker Jardine Lloyd Thompson Group (JLT) plc is attempting to build bridges with the investment community by appointing former CAI Cheuvreux analyst Barrie Cornes as head of its investor relations team, Insider Week can reveal.