Willis Offers Counterparty Risk Monitoring to Gauge Insurer Stability

April 10, 2009

“Recent insurer downgrades and financial woes have raised the level of counterparty risk to buyers who are becoming increasingly concerned that their insurers may not pay out on their insurance contract when they are supposed to,” notes Willis Group Holdings in a recent bulletin.

Willis added that it has “been responding to clients’ need for better management of counterparty risk by offering an Online Market Security tool to help clients track, monitor and report on the financial stability of insurers.”

The bulletin described the tool, “Willis Online Market Security,” as an “interactive, secure Internet service that provides clients with rating and financial information on insurers. It was first launched in 2006 and is updated constantly. “The tool triggers automated alerts whenever there is a rating action or market update, or when financials are published, ensuring that Willis clients are up to date as events unfold in the market, no matter where the client is located.”

Willis said it also “also provides greater insight into the rating action, detailing the rationale behind the action. Also available are quarterly financial summary reports that detail current issues insurance groups are facing, along with any exposures or impairments. The reports include information on the stock price, Issuer Credit Ratings and Counterparty Credit.

Dominic Samengo-Turner, CEO of Willis Global Placement commented: “In increasingly difficult financial times, managing counterparty risk is a growing concern. A number of our clients utilize this tool already, but many more have started to request the level of detail available through the Willis Online Market Security site, which will allow clients to make even better informed decisions throughout the life of a risk.

“We also offer a bespoke consulting support service which goes much further than the provision of financial and factual data. This can include discussions with analysts to provide opinion, advice and interpretation on reinsurers, training support, and bespoke research on carriers/markets. Coupling this with our market-leading carrier benchmarking tool, the Willis Quality Index®, means our clients can choose carriers based on service levels as well as price, and actively monitor them on an ongoing basis.”

Willis Online is the Group’s secure, customized web portal for clients, offering simple and convenient access to their risk and insurance information. Through this platform, Willis clients get real-time access to their insurance policies, quotes and claim reporting information as well as comprehensive market security data on the carriers relevant to them.

Source: Willis Group Holdings – www.willis.com

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