OLDWICK, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--A.M. Best has affirmed the Financial Strength Rating (FSR) of A- (Excellent) and the Long-Term Issuer Credit Ratings (Long-Term ICR) of “a-” of the members of Hallmark Insurance Group (Hallmark Group). Additionally, A.M. Best has affirmed the Long-Term ICR of “bbb-” of the group’s holding company parent, Hallmark Financial Services, Inc. (Hallmark Financial) [NASDAQ:HALL]. Operations are headquartered in Fort Worth, TX. The outlook of these Credit Ratings (ratings) is stable. Concurrently, A.M. Best has withdrawn the indicative Long-Term Issue Credit Rating of “bbb-” on Hallmark Financial’s shelf registration for senior unsecured debt, which the group is allowing to expire unused. (See below for a detailed listing of the companies.)
The ratings reflect Hallmark Group’s strong risk-adjusted capitalization, improved underwriting and overall operating performance over the past three years, along with management’s expertise in its specialty commercial and personal lines markets. Partially offsetting these positive rating factors are the group’s decreasing levels of pre-tax operating income in relation to net premiums earned, compared with the commercial automobile composite, and a growing dependence on reinsurance that is being used primarily to support non-standard personal auto, and enable cautious expansion into newer lines.
The ratings and outlooks could come under pressure should underwriting results in the group’s major segments or overall operating performance fall short of A.M. Best’s expectation, or if there is a material decline in the group’s risk-adjusted capitalization either through loss of surplus or surplus growth materially lagging that of insurance obligations.
The FSR of A- (Excellent) and the Long-Term ICRs of “a-”, each with a stable outlook have been affirmed for the members of Hallmark Insurance Group:
- American Hallmark Insurance Company of Texas
- Hallmark Insurance Company
- Hallmark Specialty Insurance Company
- Hallmark County Mutual Insurance Company
- Hallmark National Insurance Company
This press release relates to Credit Ratings that have been published on A.M. Best’s website. For all rating information relating to the release and pertinent disclosures, including details of the office responsible for issuing each of the individual ratings referenced in this release, please see A.M. Best’s Recent Rating Activity web page. For additional information regarding the use and limitations of Credit Rating opinions, please view Understanding Best’s Credit Ratings. For information on the proper media use of Best’s Credit Ratings and A.M. Best press releases, please view Guide for Media - Proper Use of Best’s Credit Ratings and A.M. Best Rating Action Press Releases.
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