SCOR Back on Broker’s Lists; Expects Minimal Impact from Floods

December 12, 2003

France’s SCOR Group has issued an announcement indicating that its securities are once again “back on the security lists of the main brokers.” The company also said that the recent flooding in Southern France “should not impact SCOR’s results.”

The bulletin cited shareholders’ recent approval for a 750 million euro ($910 million) capital increase, as well as the improvement in SCOR Group’s ratings and outlook by Standard & Poor’s, as reasons for the change. The company noted that “Aon (worldwide except the Americas – Americas committee due to meet shortly), Benfield Group, Guy Carpenter and Marsh” had put SCOR back onto their security lists. Willis had maintained SCOR on its security list.

“SCOR is pleased with these decisions, which improve the outlook for the renewal of treaties and contracts expiring at the end of the year,” said the bulletin.

The reinsurer also indicated that “The current flooding in the south of France should not have an impact on SCOR Group’s results.” The floods, which began over a week ago, have begun to subside, but they’ve had a serious impact on the region. Seven persons have been confirmed dead from flood related causes, and many communities remain isolated by floodwaters. No official estimate has yet been made, but the cost could well exceed 1 billion euros ($1.215 billion).

SCOR’s announcement pointed out that “in France there is a special public insurance regime for natural catastrophes, which covers most of the losses. In order for this regime to apply, the property damaged must be covered by a property and casualty insurance policy and the event must be officially declared a natural catastrophe by ministerial order.”

A number of analysts have blamed the availability of this relatively cheap coverage for encouraging promoters and individuals to build on flood plains and other sites subject to periodic inundation.

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