Moody's Revises DAC Report

NU Online News Service, Sept. 7, 3:15 p.m. EDT

Moody's revised its weekly credit report concerning deferred acquisition costs, breaking the category for insurers into three groups instead of two.

The original report, covered by NU Online News Service on Aug. 30, broke the industry into two groups: property and casualty, and life and health. The new report has three groups, adding multiline insurers as the third.

One of the companies reported by NU Online News Service was Unitrin with a 72 percent figure of deferred acquisition costs (DAC) compared to unearned premium reserve (UPR). The company's DAC to shareholder equity came in at 27 percent.

The shareholder equity to DAC figure is a new addition from the first report.

In an e-mail, Frank J. Sodaro, vice president of planning and analysis for Unitrin, disputed Moody's analysis. He said Unitrin was listed as a p&c company and the p&c DAC figure was much lower at 27 percent to UPR.

Moody's said it made the changes to give a more accurate picture of the business nature of the insurance company. It did not revise its figures from the first report.

Also added to the multiline category were The Hartford (DAC to UPR of 205 percent); American International Group (DAC to UPR of 188 percent); Allstate (DAC to UPR of 56 percent); and Assurant (DAC to UPR of 49 percent).

In its report, Moody's contends that a proposal from the U.S. Financial Accounting Standards Board that would limit the way companies account for DAC could have a negative impact on those companies that have been more aggressive in applying the costs.

DAC are the costs insurers incur in the acquisition and renewal of insurance contracts.

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