S&P’s Lowers Eastern Casualty Co. Ratings to ‘Bbpi’

Standard & Poor’s has lowered its counterparty credit and financial strength ratings on Eastern Casualty Insurance Co. to double-‘Bpi’ from triple-‘Bpi’ citing a decline in capitalization and weak profitability and liquidity.

Based in Marlborough, Mass. the stock company writes mainly workers’ compensation. Until 2000, the company had acted as a servicing carrier and voluntary direct assignment carrier for the Massachusetts Workers’ Compensation Assigned Risk Pool (WCARP).

In fourth-quarter 2001, the company declined to renew its entire WCARP book. Currently, just more than 95 percent of the company’s business lies within its major states of operations—Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Connecticut— and its products are distributed primarily through independent agents.

The company, which began business in 1980, is licensed in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, and Vermont.