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AM Best: 2008 Rating Upgrades Barely Outpace Downgrades for P/C Insurers

Posted on 17 Feb 2009

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Continuing the upward trends of 2006 and 2007, A.M. Best Co Inc.'s rating upgrades barely outpaced downgrades for property/casualty insurers during 2008.

Best reported today that rating upgrades for the year totaled 59, while downgrades totaled 57, although some P/C carriers were hurt by the combined effects of catastrophe losses and the economic downturn. In 2007, Best reported 87 upgrades and 43 downgrades among property/casualty insurers.

Upgrades in commercial lines outpaced downgrades 33-32, Best reported, adding that reinsurers saw one downgrade and one upgrade for the year.

Overall, Best rating changes were down to 20% of all ratings actions in 2008 from about 25% over the preceding four years.