S&P affirms QBE's core operating entities' insurer financial strength ratings at A+; raises outlook to stable

May 22, 2013, 19:57 ET from QBE North America

NEW YORK, May 22, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Standard & Poor's Ratings Services (S&P) has released the first round of new ratings for insurance companies which have been reassessed under their revised rating criteria issued on May 7. The first round of announcements relates to global multi-line insurance companies and includes QBE.

S&P affirmed the insurer financial strength ratings for QBE's core operating entities at 'A+' and raised the outlook to stable from negative.  

As expected, S&P's new criteria for groups that do not have a material banking and/or unregulated businesses note that the issuer credit rating for non-operating holding companies should now be two notches lower than the rating for core operating entities. On this basis, the issuer credit rating for QBE Insurance Group Limited, since it is a non-operating holding company, has been revised down to 'A-' from 'A'.

"QBE is one of the few insurers in the world to have retained an unchanged insurer financial strength rating over the past decade," said John Neal, QBE Group CEO. "We recognize the importance of this rating in demonstrating the company's financial strength to our partners and customers."

QBE North America is part of QBE Insurance Group Limited, one of the top 20 insurers and reinsurers worldwide. QBE Insurance Group's 2012 results can also be found at www.qbeamericas.com. Headquartered in Sydney, Australia, QBE operates out of 48 countries around the globe, with a presence in every key insurance market. The North America operation, headquartered in New York, conducts business through various property and casualty insurance subsidiaries. QBE insurance companies are rated "A" (Excellent) by A.M. Best and "A+" by Standard & Poor's.

SOURCE QBE North America