A.M. Best Ratings Services Ltd has awarded a financial strength rating of A- (Excellent) and an issuer credit rating of “a-“. to marine insurer the Swedish Club with a stable outlook.
In line with the rating, the Club is expected to maintain an excellent risk-adjusted capitalisation throughout 2015.
As a mutual association, the Club accepts some volatility in underwriting performance, it said, but, with five years of profitable operations out of the last six, free reserves have increased from USD 105.9 million at year-end 2008 to USD 164.8 million at year-end 2013.
While recognising that large claims or substantial investment losses could have a significant impact on future operating performance, A.M. Best said it expected risk-adjusted capitalisation to remain supportive of the ratings.
“The Club reported a good profit for 2013 of USD17.0 million before tax and transfer to safety reserve (2012: USD9.1 million), reflecting a strong technical result and solid investment earnings. In 2014, a good pre-tax profit is again expected.
“The Club has a strong underwriting record with a five year (2009-2013) average combined ratio of 99.2%, in spite of the combined ratio being around 110% for 2011 and 2012. Investment earnings also have been subject to some volatility, due in part to the high proportion of equity investments,” A.M. Best said in a statement.