S&P Affirms ‘A-‘ Ratings on CNA’s U.K., European Units

April 29, 2002

Standard & Poor’s announced that it has removed from CreditWatch and affirmed its single-‘A’ minus counterparty credit and insurer financial strength ratings on U.K.-based CNA Insurance Co. (Europe) Ltd. (CIE) and CNA Insurance Co. Ltd. (CI), “following the approval by the appropriate U.S. regulator of a guarantee provided to the companies by U.S.-based Continental Casualty Co.”

S&P stated that all of the companies are operating subsidiaries of the U.S. CNA Financial Corp., and S&P confirmed their outlook as “stable.”

It said that the ratings on CIE and CI “were placed on CreditWatch on Aug. 2, 2001, and Aug. 10, 2001, respectively, as a consequence of the ratings on CNA, the parent company, being placed on CreditWatch.” In January S&P warned that it would lower their ratings “if additional parental support in the form of a guarantee were not forthcoming.” It expected that a guarantee would be given by Continental Casualty, as CNA management backed the proposal, but, as approval was needed from Continental’s regulator.

On Feb. 1, 2002 S&P removed from CreditWatch and affirmed the ratings on CNA and related entities, with the exception of CIE and CI. Now that the regulator’s approval has been received it’s taking the indicated action on these two companies.

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