Press Release - JUNE 28, 2019

AM Best Downgrades Credit Ratings of FHM Insurance Company

 Michael T. Venezia
Senior Financial Analyst
+1 908 439 2200, ext. 5034

Jacqalene Lentz, CPA
+1 908 439 2200, ext. 5762

Christopher Sharkey
Manager, Public Relations
+1 908 439 2200, ext. 5159

Jim Peavy
Director, Public Relations
+1 908 439 2200, ext. 5644


OLDWICK - JUNE 28, 2019
AM Best has downgraded the Financial Strength Rating to B+ (Good) from B++ (Good) and the Long-Term Issuer Credit Rating to “bbb-” from “bbb” of FHM Insurance Company (FHM) (Jacksonville, FL). The outlook of these Credit Ratings (ratings) has been revised to stable from negative.

The ratings reflect FHM’s balance sheet strength, which AM Best categorizes as very strong, as well as its marginal operating performance, limited business profile and marginal enterprise risk management (ERM). The revised outlooks to stable reflect the company’s very strong level of balance sheet strength.

The rating downgrades reflect a revision in AM Best’s assessment of the company’s ERM to marginal from appropriate. As a mono-line workers compensation writer, management continues to face significant challenges and uncertainties associated with the successful execution of the company’s strategic plan and its ability to grow the business profitably. The company’s ERM framework is evolving as evidenced by the continued volatility in underwriting results and FHM’s inability to achieve its targets for profitability and capital growth in recent years. Although the pure loss ratio is comparable to the composite average, an already high expense ratio continues to be pressured by rate decreases and declining premium volume.

The company is refocusing on its core market of Florida after an unsuccessful geographic expansion into other Southeastern states. This embodies significant operational and execution risk in the highly competitive workers compensation market, with FHM primarily relying on policyholder dividends to maintain a sustainable advantage. Lastly, while the company uses predictive analytics and data driven metrics to increase efficiencies and risk selection, there is concern, given the current market dynamics and position, that the company will continue to be challenged in the achievement of its strategic objectives.

This press release relates to Credit Ratings that have been published on AM 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 AM 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 AM Best press releases, please view Guide for Media - Proper Use of Best’s Credit Ratings and AM Best Rating Action Press Releases.

AM Best is a global rating agency and information provider with a unique focus on the insurance industry.

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AMB# Company Name
012015 FHM Insurance Company