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AM Best Affirms Credit Ratings of Sooner Insurance Company

November 15, 2019 GMT

OLDWICK, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov 15, 2019--

AM Best has affirmed the Financial Strength Rating of A (Excellent) and the Long-Term Issuer Credit Rating of “a+” of Sooner Insurance Company (Sooner) (Colchester, VT). The outlook of these Credit Ratings (ratings) remains stable.

The ratings reflect Sooner’s balance sheet strength, which AM Best categorizes as very strong, as well as its strong operating performance, neutral business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management (ERM).

These factors are supported by Sooner’s strongest risk-adjusted capitalization, as measured by Best’s Capital Adequacy Ratio (BCAR), consistently favorable operating results, favorable loss reserve development and low underwriting leverage. The ratings also consider the level of commitment on the part of its ultimate parent, ConocoPhillips [NYSE: COP], whose management incorporates Sooner as a core element in its overall risk management program. Although the majority of Sooner’s capital is loaned to its parent, it is considered to have relatively low risk due to this affiliation, as well as the parent’s strong balance sheet and history of positive earnings.

Sooner’s operating performance has been consistently strong over the past 10-plus years, driven by solid underwriting profits, with most return metrics outperforming the industry composite, as evidenced by a five-year (2014-2018) average combined ratio of 11% and modest investment returns. The company’s loss experience has remained favorable for over a decade. This is due in part to strong risk management programs at ConocoPhillips, whose management views Sooner as a core element in its overall corporate risk management program.

From an ERM perspective, ConocoPhillips’ corporate insurance and health, safety and environmental groups have a culture of risk awareness and a framework to identify and manage various different types of risks, such as periodic reviews of their potential loss exposures through a specialist in industrial risks, a process AM Best views as appropriate for its risk profile. The ratings also reflect the implicit support of ConocoPhillips and the critical role the captive plays in its ERM program.

AM Best remains the leading rating agency of alternative risk transfer entities, with more than 200 such vehicles rated in the United States and throughout the world. For current Best’s Credit Ratings and independent data on the captive and alternative risk transfer insurance market, please visit www.ambest.com/captive.

This press release relates to Credit Ratings that have been published on AM Best’s website. For all rating information relating to the release and pertinent disclosures, including details of the office responsible for issuing each of the individual ratings referenced in this release, please see AM Best’s Recent Rating Activity web page. For additional information regarding the use and limitations of Credit Rating opinions, please view Understanding Best’s Credit Ratings. For information on the proper media use of Best’s Credit Ratings and AM Best press releases, please view Guide for Media - Proper Use of Best’s Credit Ratings and AM Best Rating Action Press Releases.

AM Best is a global credit rating agency, news publisher and data provider specializing in the insurance industry. The company does business in more than 100 countries. Headquartered in Oldwick, NJ, AM Best has offices in cities around the world, including London, Amsterdam, Dubai, Hong Kong, Singapore and Mexico City. For more information, visit www.ambest.com.

Copyright © 2019 by A.M. Best Rating Services, Inc. and/or its affiliates. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

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CONTACT: Alexander Sarfo

Senior Financial Analyst

+1 908 439 2200, ext. 5779

alexander.sarfo@ambest.com Christopher Sharkey

Manager, Public Relations

+1 908 439 2200, ext. 5159

christopher.sharkey@ambest.com Susan Molineux

Director

+1 908 439 2200, ext. 5829

susan.molineux@ambest.com Jim Peavy

Director, Public Relations

+1 908 439 2200, ext. 5644

james.peavy@ambest.com

KEYWORD: NEW YORK NEW JERSEY EUROPE UNITED STATES NORTH AMERICA

INDUSTRY KEYWORD: PROFESSIONAL SERVICES INSURANCE FINANCE

SOURCE: AM Best

Copyright Business Wire 2019.

PUB: 11/15/2019 09:32 AM/DISC: 11/15/2019 09:32 AM

http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20191115005296/en