August 13, 2014 / 3:53 AM / 3 years ago

Fitch Affirms Singapore's EQ Insurance at 'BBB+'; Withdraws Rating

(The following statement was released by the rating agency) SINGAPORE/HONG KONG, August 12 (Fitch) Fitch Ratings has affirmed Singapore-based EQ Insurance Co Ltd's (EQI) Insurer Financial Strength (IFS) Rating at 'BBB+'. The Outlook is Stable. The agency has simultaneously withdrawn the rating. Fitch has withdrawn the ratings as EQI has chosen to stop participating in the rating process. Therefore, Fitch will no longer have sufficient information to maintain the ratings. Accordingly, Fitch will no longer provide ratings or analytical coverage for EQI. KEY RATING DRIVERS The ratings incorporate EQI's strong capitalisation relative to its business portfolio, consistently healthy profitability, generally prudent underwriting approach, and liquid investment mix. On the other hand, the ratings also recognise the continuing challenges that EQI faces in building its franchise, and gaining market recognition amid competitive pressures in Singapore. The Stable Outlook reflects Fitch's view that the company is expected to continue adopting a prudent underwriting approach with emphasis on bottom-line profitability. EQI sources almost 100% of its business from the Singaporean market, which is largely free from natural catastrophes. The company maintains strong capital buffers that are commensurate with its business profile. Its paid-up capital grew steadily from SGD20.0m in 2009 to SGD36.5m in 2013 due to various capital injections from shareholders to support its business growth. Contacts: Primary Analyst Wan Siew Wai Senior Director +65 6796 7217 Fitch Ratings Singapore Pte Ltd. 6 Temasek Boulevard #35-05 Suntec Tower Four Singapore 038986 Secondary Analyst Thomas Ng Analyst +65 6796 7224 Committee Chairperson Jeffrey Liew Senior Director +852 2263 9939 Media Relations: Leslie Tan, Singapore, Tel: +65 67 96 7234, Email: leslie.tan@fitchratings.com. Additional information is available at www.fitchratings.com. Applicable criteria, 'Insurance Rating Methodology', dated 13 November 2013, are available on www.fitchratings.com. Applicable Criteria and Related Research: Insurance Rating Methodology here Additional Disclosure Solicitation Status here ALL FITCH CREDIT RATINGS ARE SUBJECT TO CERTAIN LIMITATIONS AND DISCLAIMERS. PLEASE READ THESE LIMITATIONS AND DISCLAIMERS BY FOLLOWING THIS LINK: here. IN ADDITION, RATING DEFINITIONS AND THE TERMS OF USE OF SUCH RATINGS ARE AVAILABLE ON THE AGENCY'S PUBLIC WEBSITE 'WWW.FITCHRATINGS.COM'. PUBLISHED RATINGS, CRITERIA AND METHODOLOGIES ARE AVAILABLE FROM THIS SITE AT ALL TIMES. FITCH'S CODE OF CONDUCT, CONFIDENTIALITY, CONFLICTS OF INTEREST, AFFILIATE FIREWALL, COMPLIANCE AND OTHER RELEVANT POLICIES AND PROCEDURES ARE ALSO AVAILABLE FROM THE 'CODE OF CONDUCT' SECTION OF THIS SITE. FITCH MAY HAVE PROVIDED ANOTHER PERMISSIBLE SERVICE TO THE RATED ENTITY OR ITS RELATED THIRD PARTIES. DETAILS OF THIS SERVICE FOR RATINGS FOR WHICH THE LEAD ANALYST IS BASED IN AN EU-REGISTERED ENTITY CAN BE FOUND ON THE ENTITY SUMMARY PAGE FOR THIS ISSUER ON THE FITCH WEBSITE.

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