Insurance - Colombia

Roundup: Seguros Comerciales Bolívar, Seguros Bolívar, AFAPs post poor returns

Roundup: Seguros Comerciales Bolívar, Seguros Bolívar, AFAPs post poor returns

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Fitch has raised its national scale rating on Colombian insurer Seguros Comerciales Bolívar to AAA from AA+, reflecting the insurer's sustained improvement in claim ratios, which are way below the industry's average, as well as significant improvements in profitability.

The agency also took into consideration the adequate liquidity and leverage levels, its multichannel and multiproduct strategy, and conservative and consistent risk management.

Fitch also modified Seguros Comerciales Bolívar's outlook to stable from positive, and said that a significant deterioration in the insurer's underwriting and leverage levels could lead to changes in the company's ratings.

To read the full report, in Spanish, go to this link

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The agency also affirmed sister company Seguros Bolívar's rating at AAA with a stable outlook.

The insurer has maintained an operating performance above its peers over the last four quarters, reflected in its good claim and efficiency ratios, as well as its revenue and profitability levels, Fitch said in a report.

Both insurers are part of Grupo Bolívar, the third largest financial conglomerate in Colombia, which also controls the country's third largest bank, Davivienda.

To read the full report, in Spanish, go to this link

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Uruguay's four private pension fund managers (AFAPs) posted a 3.01% average annual net return on their funds in the year to end-August, according to a central bank (BCU) report.

State-owned República AFAP, the system's largest player, led returns in the period with 3.48%, followed by Afinidad, now a unit of Colombian holding Suramericana, at 3.07%.

Unión Capital, a unit of Brazil's Itaú Unibanco (NYSE: ITUB), was third with 2.07%, and Integración, controlled by Venezuelan state-owned development bank Bandes, closed the pack at 1.91%.

The AFAPs saw assets under management hit 147bn pesos (US$8bn) as of August 31, up 48.5% compared to the same date in 2010.