The Hartford Offerings Raise $1.95 Billion

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NU Online News Service, May 20, 4:06 p.m.EDT?The Hartford Financial Services Group said the $1.95billion it has made from capital offerings is $100 million morethan originally expected.

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The Hartford, Conn.-based company said it raised some $1.1billion from 24.2 million shares of common stock priced at $45.50per share and $600 million from 12 million equity units that areautomatically convertible into common stock in three years.Additionally, the company also raised $250 million from three-yeardebt securities.

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These offerings are part of The Hartford's plan to shore up itsbalance sheet after announcing an increase of its asbestos reservesby $2.6 billion and posting a $1.7 billion charge to first-quarterearnings.

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The company said it has already sold most of its reinsuranceunit to Endurance Specialty Holdings in Bermuda and is eliminating1,500 jobs. (See NU Online News Service, May 16)

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The Hartford said it will spend some $1.5 billion of the netproceeds from these offerings to strengthen the capital position ofits property-casualty units and use $150 million for its lifeinsurance operations.

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The rest, the company said, would be used for general corporatepurposes, possibly including a contribution to its pension plan andadditional contributions to its subsidiaries.

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The Hartford reported total assets of $188.7 billion at the endof this year's first quarter.

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