Standard & Poor's

S&P downgrades Lloyd's and Zurich Insurance

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 22 September, 2001, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 22 September, 2001, 12:00am

Standard & Poor's (S&P) has downgraded two leading insurance companies - Lloyd's of London and Zurich Insurance company of Switzerland - for their exposure to last week's World Trade Centre catastrophe.

In addition, Hong Kong-based Scor Reinsurance (Asia) is among the 20 insurance companies worldwide put on creditwatch list with negative implications - indicating a possible downgrade.

S&P increased its estimation of the total losses suffered by insurers and reinsurers to at least US$17.5 billion from the terrorist attacks - up from the US$14 billion forecast it made on Wednesday. It also downgraded Zurich Insurance's counterparty credit rating to AA from AA-plus/negative while the insurers financial strength rating was also lowered, to AA from AA-plus.

S&P said the expected US$17.5 billion losses were based on confidential information provided to it and publicly available information.

It believed the final figures would be higher.