Rating Roundup: Response Group

September 11, 2008

A.M. Best Co. has placed the financial strength rating (FSR) of ‘B++’ (Good) and issuer credit rating (ICR) of “bbb” of Response Insurance Group and its following members under review with positive implications: Response Insurance Company, Connecticut Life & Casualty Insurance Company, National Merit Insurance Company (Bellevue, Wash.), Response Worldwide Direct Auto Insurance, Response Worldwide Insurance Company, Warner Insurance Company and its separately rated member, Response Indemnity Company of California. Except as indicated, all of the companies are domiciled in Meriden, Conn. Best said, however that these rating actions do not affect the non-rated member of the group, New York-based Response Indemnity Company. “These rating actions are based on the announcement that a definitive agreement has been reached for the purchase of Direct Response Corporation (Wilmington, DE), the holding company for the Response Insurance Group, by Trinity Universal Insurance Company (Trinity) (Dallas, TX), the lead company of Unitrin Property and Casualty Insurance Group.” Best also noted: “The acquired companies will eventually be reinsured through a quota-share agreement with Trinity. Unitrin currently operates a direct sales segment, which will be expanded following the completion of the acquisition, since Response utilizes a direct sales approach to market its business.”

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