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Zurich American to Issue $225 Million Cat Bond for CA Earthquake Losses

Source: Business INsurance

Posted on 15 Dec 2009

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Standard & Poor's Corp. reported on Monday that Zurich American Insurance Co. plans to issue a $225 million catastrophe bond to cover extreme losses due to California earthquakes.

The bond, Lakeside Re II Ltd., offers three years of reinsurance protection to the Schaumburg, Ill.-based insurer. Other units of Zurich Financial Services Group may be added as ceding insurers from time to time, S&P said. The Class A notes cover losses in excess of $500 million on a per-occurrence basis.

The deal is expected to close Dec. 23, according to New York-based S&P, which rated the bond BB-.

Risk modeling is based on Newark, Calif.-based Risk Management Solutions Inc.'s U.S. earthquake model version 9.0.

This is the third catastrophe bond with which Zurich American has been involved. The first was Kamp Re, which defaulted because of losses related to Hurricane Katrina. The second bond, Lakeside Re I, was issued in 2006 and is scheduled to mature by year-end, S&P said.

The transaction brings the insurance-linked securities market closer to the $3 billion to $4 billion target that experts had anticipated. Currently, total issuance volume stands at roughly $2.6 billion for 2009.


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