Sun, Dec 11, 2011 - Page 11 News List

European insurers latest to get credit warning from S&P

AFP, Washington

Standard & Poor’s (S&P) on Friday warned a swathe of European insurers that they could face a credit downgrade as a result of the continent’s fiscal crisis.

Allianz, Aviva, Axa, Generali and Mapfre were among 15 firms warned by the US-based ratings agency.

S&P said the “creditwatch” was related to an earlier warning on the ratings of 15 of the 17 countries of the eurozone.


S&P’s warning on Monday threatened a one-notch cut to the hallowed “AAA” ratings of Germany, the Netherlands, Finland, Luxembourg and Austria.

France, also “AAA”-rated and the eurozone’s second-largest economy, could be hit with a two-notch cut, as could the other countries currently rated below “AAA.”

S&P said it would complete a review of the 15 countries’ ratings “as soon as possible” following the EU summit.


It warned on Tuesday that the eurozone’s 440 billion euro (US$589 billion) European Financial Stability Facility bailout fund, which depends on the triple-A ratings of six eurozone countries, also risks losing its top rating.

For insurers, the firm pointed to market turmoil and poor capital trends.

“Our more-recent negative adjustments to Europe’s economic growth prospects and the potentially heightened credit risk ... only serve to compound the difficulties that insurers face,” the ratings agency said.

This story has been viewed 1941 times.

Comments will be moderated. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned.

TOP top