Press Release - MARCH 19, 2020

AM Best Upgrades Credit Ratings of Virginia Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company and Its Subsidiaries

 Dan Hofmeister, CFA, CAIA, CPCU, ARe
Financial Analyst
+1 908 439 2200, ext. 5385

Joseph Burtone
+1 908 439 2200, ext. 5125

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

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


OLDWICK - MARCH 19, 2020
AM Best has upgraded the Financial Strength Rating to A (Excellent) from A- (Excellent) and the Long-Term Issuer Credit Ratings to “a” from “a-” for the members of the Virginia Farm Bureau Group: Virginia Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company (Virginia Farm Bureau) and its wholly owned subsidiaries, Virginia Farm Bureau Fire and Casualty Insurance Company, Virginia Farm Bureau Town and Country Insurance, and Countryway Insurance Company (Syracuse, NY). All companies are domiciled in Richmond, VA, except where specified. The outlook of these Credit Ratings (ratings) has been revised to stable from positive.

The ratings reflect Virginia Farm Bureau’s balance sheet strength, which AM Best categorizes as very strong, as well as its adequate operating performance, neutral business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management.

The rating upgrades reflect the continued improvement in the group’s balance sheet strength. As a result of strict underwriting guidelines and extensive risk and exposure management, the group’s operating returns have improved steadily. The returns have resulted in significant surplus additions, debt reductions and underwriting leverage relief. Surplus has increased over $90 million, and $30 million in surplus note principal was repaid. Additionally, the group’s underwriting leverage ratio now tracks with peer averages, while in the past it had been relatively higher.

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 Guide to 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 credit rating agency, news publisher and data analytics provider specializing in the insurance industry. Headquartered in the United States, the company does business in over 100 countries with regional offices in New York, London, Amsterdam, Dubai, Hong Kong, Singapore and Mexico City.

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