Best Affirms and Withdraws Ratings of Rosemont Re

November 8, 2005

A.M. Best Co. announced that it has affirmed the financial strength rating of “B” (Fair) and issuer credit rating of “bb” on Bermuda-based Rosemont Reinsurance Ltd. Both ratings have a negative outlook.

Concurrently Best said the “ratings will be withdrawn and an FSR rating of NR-4 (Company Request) assigned in response to management’s request that Rosemont be removed from A.M. Best’s interactive rating process.”

Rosemont Re is a reinsurance subsidiary of U.K. insurer Goshawk Plc. Best had previously downgraded the company’s ratings (See IJ Website Oct. 21) following heavy losses from hurricanes Katrina and Rita.

Goshawk had indicated that it was trying to find a buyer for Rosemont, or in the alternative would place the company into run-off. It said at the time that any such sale would be “conditioned upon Rosemont Re maintaining its ‘A-‘ (Excellent) rating from A.M. Best,” adding that: “In the event this rating is downgraded, the Company’s ability to earn existing unearned premium or write new business will be severely impaired.”

The current request indicates that Rosemont is, or soon will be, in runoff.

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