OLDWICK, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--A.M. Best Co. has upgraded the issuer credit rating (ICR) to “a+” from “a” and affirmed the financial strength rating of A (Excellent) of Rural Mutual Insurance Company (Rural) (Madison, WI). The outlook for both ratings is stable.
The upgrading of the ICR reflects Rural’s solid capitalization, its trend of positive operating results, along with an aggressive risk mitigation and enterprise risk management (ERM) process. The company distributes its products through an established network of independent agents and is currently the leading writer of farmowner multiperil business, based on direct written premiums, in Wisconsin.
Partially offsetting these positive rating factors are Rural’s concentration of business in Wisconsin, which exposes it to frequent and severe weather-related events as well as any disruption caused by judicial, legislative, regulatory or competitive actions. These risks are addressed in the company’s ERM process where tolerances and strategies are established, and include comprehensive reinsurance programs designed to mitigate the impact of significant weather-related events.
Factors that could lead to negative rating actions include a sustained deterioration in Rural’s operating performance or a sudden, unexpected material decline in its risk-adjusted capitalization. Factors that could lead to positive rating actions include a continued favorable underwriting performance by the company over the long term while maintaining or improving its strong risk-adjusted capital position.
The methodology used in determining these ratings is Best’s Credit Rating Methodology, which provides a comprehensive explanation of A.M. Best’s rating process and contains the different rating criteria employed in
the rating process. Best’s Credit Rating Methodology can be found at www.ambest.com/ratings/methodology.
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