Monday Morning Headlines

Monday Morning Headlines are compiled by SNL Insurance and produced by as a weekly video digest of the news making headlines in the U.S. Insurance industry.  In this edition of Monday Morning Headlines:

Industry News

Congress reauthorizes TRIA through 2020

Congress passed a bill reauthorizing the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act through 2020, setting up the reinstatement of a federal program designed to support insurers writing terrorism risk coverage. The legislation won broad support in the House and Senate, but was not without controversy: Senate Democrats criticized a provision that would roll back Dodd-Frank Act regulations. The rollback was a key reason that Congress failed to reauthorize TRIA last year and allowed it to lapse.

Personal Lines

FINRA to scrutinize L-Share Annuity practices and comp structures in 2015

FINRA said variable annuity sales practices and compensation structures will be a key focus in 2015. The independent regulator will particularly scrutinize the sale and marketing of so-called L-share annuities because these shares typically have shorter surrender periods but higher costs. Sellers include Lincoln Financial Group and The Hartford.

Reinsurance & Capital Markets

Guy Carp EMEA CEO says reinsurance is on verge of fundamental change 

The reinsurance industry is on the verge of a fundamental change in the way it operates, according to Nick Frankland, Guy Carpenter’s Europe, Middle East and Africa CEO.  At a press briefing in London, Guy Carpenter said January 1 reinsurance renewals saw more softening across virtually all lines of business. Frankland referenced a “relentless” capital oversupply. 

Industry News 

SNL’s Q4 ‘14 Capital Markets & M&A Tables – Morgan Stanley & Goldman Sachs top advisers 

SNL published its fourth-quarter 2014 capital markets and M&A league tables. The number of M&A deals announced by insurance underwriters jumped in the fourth quarter to 28, compared to 15 deals in the third quarter of 2014 and 20 in the same period a year-ago.  Deal value also grew to $5.12 billion.  Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs were the top M&A financial advisers in the quarter.

Industry News 

XL acquiring Catlin….will operate as “XL Catlin” 

XL Group is acquiring Catlin Group. The acquisition values the entire issued and to-be-issued share capital of Catlin at approximately £2.79 billion, or $4.21 billion. XL announced that it will operate under the “XL Catlin” trade name.

Bonus Stories

Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer, R- Mo., has become chairman of the Subcommittee on Housing and Insurance for the House Financial Services Committee. He was previously vice chairman of the subcommittee. His predecessor, Rep. Randy Neugebauer, R-Texas, will now chair the Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit Subcommittee.

SNL spoke to The Hartford Financial Services Group CFO Beth Bombara about her role in transforming the company into a slimmer, P&C-focused insurer.

Affiliation of growing, shrinking mutuals to enhance combined group’s geographic diversity

SNL took a closer look at the impact of an affiliation of two upper Midwest-based mutual P&C companies, one of which has been broadening its business and the other of which has been narrowing its focus. The group of P&C companies led by Western National Mutual Insurance Co. expects to finalize the affiliation with Lansing, Mich.-based Michigan Millers Mutual Insurance Co. once it gets regulatory approval.

SNL Insurance is a premier provider of insurance news, data and analysis. For more information about SNL’s insurance news coverage, visit the SNL Insurance website.

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