Press Release - MARCH 20, 2020

AM Best Launches Dedicated Access to Ongoing Pandemic-Related Insurance Industry Analysis


CONTACTS:
 Christopher Sharkey
Manager, Public Relations
+1 908 439 2200, ext. 5159
christopher.sharkey@ambest.com

Jim Peavy
Director, Public Relations
+1 908 439 2200, ext. 5644
james.peavy@ambest.com

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

OLDWICK - MARCH 20, 2020
AM Best has launched dedicated access to its analytical updates on the COVID-19 virus outbreak. This web page (http://www.ambest.com/about/coronavirus.html) will be updated regularly with insurance industry-specific commentary related to the ongoing pandemic and video discussions with members of AM Best’s analytic teams about the unfolding situation.

To date, AM Best has issued 10 announcements since late January on the wide-ranging impact of the coronavirus outbreak, most with accompanying video discussions. Below are summaries of announcements released so far in March 2020. Reports and videos released before March considered potential impacts in China and Southeast Asia, as well as a look at pandemic stress testing typically undertaken by insurers.

Health Insurers Adjust as COVID-19 Spreads in United States (March 19, 2020): The risks to U.S. health insurers from the COVID-19 outbreak continue to expand in scope and complexity on the claims management, economic and operational fronts. See the Best’s Commentary and related video.

Japanese Insurers Continue to Grapple With Global Market Volatility (March 19, 2020): Insurers in Japan remain financially stable to weather ongoing market volatility brought about by the COVID-19 virus outbreak and the sharp decline in oil prices due to their robust balance sheet fundamentals. See the Best’s Commentary.

AM Best to Deploy Pandemic-Related Stress Test for Rated Insurance Companies (March 18, 2020): AM Best is developing stress testing that it will conduct on its rated insurance companies’ balance sheets to gauge the impact of the COVID-19 virus fallout on their risk-adjusted capital levels, investment portfolios, reserve adequacy and other aspects of the risks borne by rated entities. See the related press release and related video.

AM Best Revises U.S. Life/Annuity Market Outlook to Negative (March 16, 2020): Due to the significant volatility and uncertainty created by the COVID-19 virus, AM Best has revised its outlook on the U.S. life/annuity segment to negative. See the Best’s Market Segment Report and related video.

European Insurers Well-Positioned to Manage Potential Exposure to Pandemic Risk (March 8, 2020): The biggest impact to European insurers out of the COVID-19 outbreak likely will result from the economic fallout, as governments and markets react to the virus’ rapid spread, rather than from direct coronavirus exposures. See the Best’s Commentary.

U.S. Health Insurers Face Potential Rise in Claims Due to Coronavirus (March 6, 2020): This commentary looks at to what extent U.S. health insurers can expect increases in coronavirus-related medical claims, with costs to be driven by at-risk patients such as the elderly and those with pre-existing conditions. See the Best’s Commentary and related video.

Further Global Interest Rate Cuts Anticipated as Economic Buffer for Coronavirus Impact (March 4, 2020): The initial move by the Federal Reserve to cut its federal funds rate came as a surprise. AM Best expects further accommodative monetary policy actions to continue throughout 2020. See the Best’s Commentary.

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.