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Sep 3, 2015

Tough new capital rules put pressure on Europe’s insurers

LONDON/FRANKFURT, Sept 3 (Reuters) – A drop in capital
buffers reported by Dutch insurers has raised concern over how
well prepared the broader European industry is for revised rules
on the amount of money they need to hold in case of market
shocks.

Nationalised Dutch insurer ASR said last week its available
capital would fall sharply under the Solvency II rules coming
into force in Jan. 2016. Similar warnings from listed Dutch
companies Aegon and Delta Lloyd.
prompted steep falls in their share prices.

Aug 25, 2015

Zurich Insurance proposes 5.6 billion pound takeover of rival RSA

LONDON/ZURICH (Reuters) – Zurich Insurance (ZURN.VX: Quote, Profile, Research) made a friendly 5.6 billion pound takeover proposal for British rival RSA (RSA.L: Quote, Profile, Research) on Tuesday, paving the way for one of Europe’s biggest insurance deals.

Zurich said a month ago it was weighing a bid but left it to the last day under British takeover rules to unveil a cash offer of 550 pence per share, roughly in the middle of the price range expected by investors in Zurich and RSA.

Aug 25, 2015

Zurich Insurance proposes $8.8 bln takeover of rival RSA

LONDON/ZURICH, Aug 25 (Reuters) – Zurich Insurance
made a friendly 5.6 billion pound ($8.8 billion) takeover
proposal for British rival RSA on Tuesday, paving the
way for one of Europe’s biggest insurance deals.

Zurich said a month ago it was weighing a bid but left it to
the last day under British takeover rules to unveil a cash offer
of 550 pence per share, roughly in the middle of the price range
expected by investors in Zurich and RSA.

Aug 21, 2015

RSA, Zurich investors face struggle to bridge valuation gap

LONDON, Aug 21 (Reuters) – Shareholders in British insurer
RSA are bracing for a lowball bid from prospective
suitor Zurich Insurance, putting one of Europe’s
largest ever insurance deals in doubt.

After flagging its interest to the market on July 28, Zurich
has until Tuesday evening to make an offer or retreat for at
least six months, unless RSA asks for an extension.

Aug 6, 2015

Insurer RSA says up to Zurich to decide next move in mooted takeover

ZURICH/LONDON, Aug 6 (Reuters) – Zurich Insurance Group
has reiterated its interest in RSA but
stressed it would not overpay for the British insurer, which
said the “ball is in Zurich’s court” in determining what happens
next in the possible takeover.

Cash-rich Zurich is weighing up a bid for RSA, a deal which
would vault the Swiss insurer into the leader’s seat in British
commercial insurance and help with access to Canada, Scandinavia
and Latin America.

Aug 6, 2015

British healthcare firm Bupa extends 800 mln pound credit line

LONDON, Aug 6 (Reuters) – British private healthcare group
Bupa has extended an 800 million pound ($1.25
billion) syndicated credit facility by three years to 2020 at
least to strengthen its capital buffers, its chief executive
said.

European Union Solvency II regulations for insurers come
into force in January 2016, and are expected to require firms to
set aside more capital in the event of shocks to their business.

Aug 5, 2015

Bulk pension deals boost profits at Legal & General

LONDON, Aug 5 (Reuters) – British insurer Legal & General
posted a forecast-beating 18 percent rise in first-half
operating profit on Wednesday, helped by strong performance in
the bulk annuity corporate pensions market, sending its shares
up over 3 percent.

Life insurers have looked to the bulk annuity market for new
business as personal annuity sales dwindle following British
reforms to tax rules for pension savers which give retirees more
freedom over what to do with their pension pots.

Aug 3, 2015

UK life insurer revenue lifeline sees patchy start to year

LONDON, Aug 3 (Reuters) – A revenue boost to British life
insurers from companies looking to pass on their pension scheme
risk is looking uncertain, as low interest rates make scheme
deficits wider and deals harder to reach.

Insurers are putting their faith in so-called bulk-annuity
deals to fill a hole left by changes to the pensions industry
earlier this year, which have at least halved demand from
individuals for annuities providing an income for life.

Jul 28, 2015

Cash-rich Zurich Insurance eyes bid for British rival RSA

ZURICH/LONDON (Reuters) – Cash-rich Zurich Insurance (ZURN.VX: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) is weighing a bid for British rival RSA (RSA.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) which could top $8 billion, as insurers look to diversify amid tighter regulations and toughening market conditions.

Zurich’s statement on Tuesday that it was considering a bid drove the largest one-day gain for 23 years in the British insurer’s shares, which closed up 18 percent at 490 pence.

Jul 26, 2015

Foreign insurers taking cautious look at Iran after nuclear deal

LONDON/SYDNEY, July 26 (Reuters) – Western and Middle East
insurance specialists see Iran as an appealing $8 billion market
in the wake of its nuclear deal with world powers, though
uncertainty over when sanctions on Tehran will be lifted means
they are treating the country with caution.

Eight out of 11 insurance and reinsurance specialists who
responded to questions emailed by Reuters this week said Iran
was an attractive or very attractive market, especially in the
marine and energy sectors. Responses were on an anonymous basis
due to the sensitivity of the issue.

    • About Carolyn

      "I have worked at Reuters for more than 20 years but I switched in Sept 2014 to a new beat - insurance and fund management. I write about things like insurance deals, fund trends, geopolitical risks insured by Lloyd's and I'm grappling with understanding company accounts. In my vanishingly small spare time, I hope to contribute more to Reuters entertainment file."
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