A.M. Best Upgrades Issuer Credit Ratings of Securian Financial Group, Inc. and Its Key Insurance Subsidiaries
December 5, 2017 by Best's News Service
Oldwick – A.M. Best has upgraded the Long-Term Issuer Credit Ratings (Long-Term ICR) to “aa” from “aa-” and affirmed the Financial Strength Rating (FSR) of A+ (Superior) of Minnesota Life Insurance Company(Minnesota Life) and its subsidiary, Securian Life Insurance Company. Concurrently, A.M. Best has upgraded the Long-Term ICR to “a+” from “a” and affirmed the FSR of A (Excellent) of Securian Casualty Company (Securian Casualty). The outlook of these Credit Ratings (ratings) is stable. These subsidiaries are the key life/health and property/casualty (P/C) subsidiaries of Securian Financial Group, Inc. (SFG) (Delaware) and collectively operate under the Securian Financial (Securian) brand name. In addition, A.M. Best also has upgraded the Long-Term ICR to “a” from “a-” of SFG and the Long-Term Issue Credit Rating to “a+” from “a” on $125 million 8.25% surplus notes due 2025, issued by Minnesota Life.
In addition, A.M. Best has affirmed the FSR of A (Excellent) and the Long-Term ICR of “a” of Canadian Premier Life Insurance Company (Canadian Premier) (Toronto, ON), as well as the FSR of A- (Excellent) and the Long-Term ICRs of “a-” of American Modern Life Insurance Company (American Modern Life) and Southern Pioneer Life Insurance Company (Southern Pioneer Life). The outlook of these ratings is stable. All companies named above are headquartered in St. Paul, MN, except where specified.
The Long-Term ICR upgrades reflect Securian’s balance sheet strength, which A.M. Best categorizes as strongest, as well as its strong operating performance, favorable business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management (ERM). The ratings also factor in Securian’s recent management actions to enhance the balance sheet strength, improve operating results and expand the business profile. A.M. Best notes that the risk-adjusted capitalization is excellent despite several merger and acquisition events in recent years. Additionally, the investment portfolio has remained conservative despite the low interest rate environment, and has been enhanced by expanded risk management practices to hedge further interest rate changes and equity market volatility. The operating profile is viewed as strong and has sustained favorable long-term growth trends and consistent profitability. More recently, management has developed new products and improved underwriting on current products to support increasing profitability and manage mortality results. The favorable business profile benefits from the strong market position of Securian’s core segments, as well as the increasing diversification through its growing P/C affiliate, Securian Casualty, and recent entrance into the Canadian markets through Canadian Premier. The ERM is categorized as appropriate given the organizations strong risk management capabilities that support the elevated risk profile and the expanding complexity of the organization.
The rating upgrades of Securian Casualty reflect its balance sheet strength, which A.M. Best categorizes as very strong, as well as its adequate operating performance, neutral business profile and appropriate ERM. The rating upgrades also reflect the continued integration and increasing importance to Securian’s Financial Institutions Group segment. Securian Casualty continues to establish itself within the contractual liability marketplace, offering products such as collateral protection, debt protection and guaranteed asset protection. They continue to diversify their offerings among all 50 states and have been a significant contributor to the Financial Institutions Group.
The rating affirmations of Canadian Premier reflect its balance sheet strength, which A.M. Best categorizes as very strong, as well as its adequate operating performance, neutral business profile and appropriate risk management program. The ratings also reflect Canadian Premier’s position as the new Canadian operating segment of Securian, providing group creditor life and accident and sickness insurance products on a direct marketing basis. The company further benefits from the financial strength and strategic support provided by the parent organization.
The ratings of American Modern Life and Southern Pioneer Life reflect each company’s balance sheet strength, which A.M. Best categorizes as very strong, with significant excess capital and low-risk investment profiles, as well as their adequate operating performance, limited business profile and appropriate ERM. The companies also benefit from the financial strength and risk management capabilities of their parent, Minnesota Life.
This press release relates to Credit Ratings that have been published on A.M. Best’s website. For all rating information relating to the release and pertinent disclosures, including details of the office responsible for issuing each of the individual ratings referenced in this release, please see A.M. Best’s Recent Rating Activity web page. For additional information regarding the use and limitations of Credit Rating opinions, please view Understanding Best’s Credit Ratings. For information on the proper media use of Best’s Credit Ratings and A.M. Best press releases, please view Guide for Media – Proper Use of Best’s Credit Ratings and A.M. Best Rating Action Press Releases.
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