OLDWICK, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--AM Best has upgraded the Financial Strength Rating to B++ (Good) from B+ (Good) and the Long-Term Issuer Credit Rating to “bbb” from “bbb-” of Northwest G.F. Mutual Insurance Company (NWGF) (Eureka, SD). The outlook of these Credit Ratings (ratings) have been revised to stable from positive.
The ratings reflect NWGF’s balance sheet strength, which AM Best categorizes as strong, as well as its adequate operating performance, limited business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management (ERM).
The operating performance assessment, which was revised upward to adequate from marginal, reflects NWGF’s clear trend of improved operating return measures over the past five years, including pre-tax return on revenue, return on surplus and operating ratio. These improved operating results have been driven predominantly by improved underwriting performance, particularly incurred losses and loss adjustment expenses. In turn, NWGF’s improved operating results have fueled robust growth in policyholders’ surplus over the past five years.
The balance sheet assessment of strong reflects risk-adjusted capitalization being at the strongest level and improving underwriting and reserving leverage measures, which are offset by the company’s limited financial flexibility and scale of operations. The limited business profile assessment is driven largely by NWGF’s geographic concentration in North and South Dakota, which exposes results to frequent and severe weather-related events, as well as potential judicial, economic or regulatory challenges. The appropriate ERM assessment is driven by an evolving risk management framework, and risk management capabilities that remain appropriately commensurate with the complexity of the business.
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