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23rd February 2014

Weekly Insurance Global Analysis

This week, more results were announced-they included AIA-still impressing in Asia, Argo, Ageas, AXA, Brit, Markel, Swiss Re-with a strong return, and Australian-based IAG and Suncorp. Meanwhile, RSA will report in a few days time, and media speculation is rife-no dividend, a range of disposals, major fund raising, or a combination of all of these, are all been touted as new group chief executive Stephen Hester pores over the options.
EIOPA issued a report on creating a single EU market for personal pensions.
Standard & Poor's felt that the cost of UK floods would not result in the reduction in rating for insurers. The rating agency improved the ratings on Irish Life and MAPFRE.
Lloyd's Market Association(LMA) replied to the Competition Commission on the problems with the UK motor insurance market, and Innovation Group looked at consumer opinion on telematics and driverless cars, whilst also announcing two major acquisitions and a strategic analytics partnership in the US with SpatialKey. There were meaningful global surveys from Kable on the increase in ICT spend and State Street on the importance of analytics in the insurance investment arena. Quindell published a further upbeat trading update, a Mastek Majesco solution went live in the US, and SSP warned Australian insurers about legacy systems and the prospect of being left behind by nimble start-ups.
Gallagher acquired in Alabama, Kiln moved for a 49% stake in a leading US specialty coverholder, Liberty Mutual bought a majority stake in a Malaysian general insurer, and Rothesay Life is to acquire MetLife's UK bulk annuity pensions business.
There were management appointments at BMS Associates and DAS UK. David Brosnan replaced Barbara Merry as chief executive at CNA's Hardy Underwriting.
Articles on the above topics are included in those added to the Insurance Newslink and Financial Newslink global database service today at www.onlystrategic.com