AM Best

A.M. Best Affirms Credit Ratings of Members of Standard Insurance Group and Pacific Guardian Life Insurance Company, Ltd.


Keith Behrmann, CFA, ChFC, CLU
Senior Financial Analyst
+1 908 439 2200, ext. 5733

Joseph Zazzera, MBA
+1 908 439 2200, ext. 5797
Christopher Sharkey
Manager, Public Relations
+1 908 439 2200, ext. 5159

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


OLDWICK - AUGUST 09, 2018 09:37 AM (EDT)
A.M. Best has affirmed the Financial Strength Rating (FSR) of A (Excellent) and the Long-Term Issuer Credit Ratings (Long-Term ICR) of “a+” of Standard Insurance Company (Portland, OR) and its affiliate, The Standard Life Insurance Company of New York (White Plains, NY), together referred to as the Standard Insurance Group (The Standard). Additionally, A.M. Best has affirmed the Long-Term ICR of “bbb+” and the Long-Term Issue Credit Ratings (Long-Term IR) of “bbb+” on the outstanding $250 million 5% senior unsecured notes, due 2022, of StanCorp Financial Group, Inc. (StanCorp Financial) (Portland, OR), the intermediate holding company of The Standard.

Concurrently, A.M. Best has affirmed the FSR of A (Excellent) and the Long-Term ICR of “a” of Pacific Guardian Life Insurance Company, Ltd. (Pacific Guardian) (Honolulu, HI). The outlook of these Credit Ratings (ratings) is stable. The Standard and Pacific Guardian are the U.S. insurance subsidiaries of Meiji Yasuda Life Insurance Company (Meiji Yasuda).

The ratings of The Standard reflect its balance sheet strength, which A.M. Best categorizes as strong, as well as its strong operating performance, favorable business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management (ERM).

The Standard maintains strong market positions in its core employee benefit and individual disability markets, further benefiting from the diversification into its asset management business segments. These markets are viewed as highly competitive, but the organization has maintained favorable premium growth trends and consistently favorable earnings on Statutory and U.S. GAAP basis. Risk-adjusted capitalization, as measured by Best’s Capital Adequacy Ratio (BCAR), is assessed as adequate; however, growth in total capital has been constrained by dividends to StanCorp Financial. Additionally, A.M. Best views The Standard’s investment portfolio as higher risk due to the high allocation to commercial mortgage loans, and concerns regarding the geographic concentration and liquidity risk. However, A.M. Best notes The Standard’s expertise and long-term performance in this asset class.

The ratings of Pacific Guardian reflect its balance sheet strength, which A.M. Best categorizes as strongest, as well as its adequate operating performance, limited business profile and appropriate ERM.

Pacific Guardian maintains a leading market position in Hawaii’s temporary disability income market; however, the company has been challenged to grow premiums in its other business lines and outside of Hawaii. The company has reported consistent profitability, although recent earnings have been impacted by increased investment in technology. Total capital has reported modest declines due to dividends to Meiji Yasuda; however, risk-adjusted capitalization, as measured by BCAR, is assessed as strongest in support of its insurance and investment risks.

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

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

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