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Best downgrades financial strength, issuer credit rating of Generali


LONDON—A.M. Best Co. Inc. has downgraded the financial strength rating and issuer credit rating of Assicurazioni Generali S.p.A. and its main subsidiaries.

Best dropped the financial strength rating of Trieste, Italy-based Generali and its subsidiaries to A from A+ and the issuer credit rating to a from aa-. Best said all ratings remain under review with negative implications.

“These rating actions were driven by Generali’s exposure to investments in several peripheral eurozone economies, Italy in particular,” Best said Wednesday in a statement announcing the action.

French reinsurer under review

Best also placed under review with negative implications the A++ financial strength rating and aa+ issuer credit rating of Caisse Centrale de Reassurance S.A., the French state-backed reinsurer.

“The rating action reflects the continued negative developments regarding the eurozone sovereign debt crisis, with the continued deterioration of the sovereign creditworthiness and the negative economic outlook for the region, which put pressure on the sovereign ratings of the Republic of France,” Best said. “CCR currently benefits from an explicit unlimited guarantee provided by the Republic of France to its state-backed business, which is factored in its ratings.”

Best also announced Wednesday that it had downgraded MAPFRE Re, the reinsurance arm of Spain’s MAPFRE S.A., because of concerns over the company’s exposure to investments in several peripheral eurozone economies, particularly Spain and Portugal.