OLDWICK, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--AM Best has affirmed the Financial Strength Rating of A- (Excellent) and the Long-Term Issuer Credit Rating (Long-Term ICR) of “a-” (Excellent) of Illinois Casualty Company (ICC). Concurrently, AM Best affirmed the Long-Term ICR of “bbb-” (Good) of ICC Holdings, Inc. [NASDAQ: ICCH], the publicly traded holding company that owns 100% of ICC. The outlook of these Credit Ratings (ratings) is stable. Both companies are domiciled in Rock Island, IL.
The ratings reflect ICC’s balance sheet strength, which AM Best assesses as very strong, as well as its adequate operating performance, limited business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management (ERM).
ICC’s very strong balance sheet reflects the strongest level of risk-adjusted capitalization, as measured by Best’s Capital Adequacy Ratio (BCAR), underwriting metrics that are generally in line with or better than the composite average and overall surplus growth during the most recent five-year period. While surplus grew cumulatively over this time, there were two years that reported a decline, which were influenced by unrealized capital losses from shifts in the equity market. Partially offsetting these positive factors are ICC’s elevated common stock leverage compared to the composite average and its adverse one-year loss reserve development in the most recent calendar year stemming from reserve strengthening efforts that consider social and property-related inflationary pressures. Common stock leverage is partially influenced by a fund, while reported as equity, has underlying assets in fixed income.
ICC’s operating performance continues to perform adequately with pretax operating income reported in each of the last five years, primarily a result of consistent net investment income, which has offset underwriting losses in most periods. The profile assessment reflects the company’s niche focus serving the food and beverage industry. AM Best considers the ERM program as appropriate for the company’s risk profile, with prudent reinsurance coverage purchased to insulate the balance sheet from shock weather losses.
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