July 12th, 2013

Week’s Top Stories: July 6 - 12, 2013

Posted at 8:00 AM ET

July 1 Renewals Indicate Downward Pressure on Reinsurance Rates Likely to Continue through 2013: Guy Carpenter reports that reinsurance market rates on line (ROLs) continued to be driven by an influx of capital from third-party investors at the July 1 renewals, in spite of catastrophe losses reaching approximately USD20 billion during the first six months of 2013 (above the ten-year average for the period). In a briefing released today, Guy Carpenter comments that robust catastrophe bond, sidecar and collateralized reinsurance activity throughout the year has for the first time pushed pricing in the capital markets to “decouple” or breakaway from levels set by the traditional market. This has in turn prompted downward pressure on overall traditional market pricing.

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Guy Carpenter’s 8th Annual Specialty Insurance Program Issuing Carrier Survey: Guy Carpenter continues to provide the industry with our annual survey analysis of the current program marketplace from the program issuing carriers’ perspective. About This Year’s Respondents:  As in past years, the respondents were a mix of both traditional insurance companies that have specialty program operations (77 percent) and true, specialty insurance carriers (23 percent).

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Influx of Convergence Capital Triggers Downward Pressure on Pricing at June 1 Renewals: Guy Carpenter reports that the reinsurance sector has witnessed dynamic capital growth in 2012 and 2013, spurred by an influx of capital from alternative sources. In its June 2013 renewal briefing, Guy Carpenter finds that this surge in alternative or “convergence” capital has changed the nature of the sector’s capital structure, as investors grow increasingly comfortable with supplying capacity through a convergence of both traditional and alternative vehicles. This market dynamic has also begun to impact significantly reinsurance pricing for peak property catastrophe risks in the U.S., with surplus capacity and lower target returns driving downward pressure on pricing for June 1 renewals and likely through the remainder of 2013.

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Chart: Alternative Capacity as a Percentage of Global Property Catastrophe Reinsurance Limit: The increasing influence of alternative capacity is demonstrated by the chart below, which shows the growth of convergence capacity as a percentage of global property catastrophe limit from 2008 to 2013 (projected).

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GC Securities* Completes Catastrophe Bond Queen Street Re VIII Limited for Munich Re: GC Securities announced the placement of the Principal At-Risk Notes, with notional principal of $75,000,000, through a newly formed catastrophe bond, Queen Street Re VIII Limited, to benefit Munich Re. This is the eighth Queen Street cat bond to benefit Munich Re and the seventh overall cat bond issuance benefitting Munich Re since 2011.

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And, you may have missed…..

A.M. Best BCAR Updates: A briefing prepared by Guy Carpenter’s Ratings Advisory Team outlines important changes to the BCAR methodology and their implications.

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* Securities or investments, as applicable, are offered in the United States through GC Securities, a division of MMC Securities Corp., a US registered broker-dealer and member FINRA/SIPC. Main Office: 1166 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10036. Phone: (212) 345-5000. Securities or investments, as applicable, are offered in the European Union by GC Securities, a division of MMC Securities (Europe) Ltd., which is authorized and regulated by the Financial Services Authority. Reinsurance products are placed through qualified affiliates of Guy Carpenter & Company, LLC. MMC Securities Corp., MMC Securities (Europe) Ltd. and Guy Carpenter & Company, LLC are affiliates owned by Marsh & McLennan Companies, Inc. This communication is not intended as an offer to sell or a solicitation of any offer to buy any security, financial instrument, reinsurance or insurance product.

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