Transatlantic Reinsurance Company got handed its second downgrade in one day yesterday, when Moody's Investors Service lowered the insurance financial strength rating to Aa3 from Aa2 late yesterday, citing catastrophe exposure and other factors.

Earlier in the day, Standard & Poor's had said it was also lowering the financial strength ratings of Transatlantic Reinsurance Co. and its wholly-owned subsidiaries==to "double-A-minus" from "double-A"==citing the fact that the reinsurer was not very different from other "double-A-minus" companies.

Moody's said the ratings outlook for Transatlantic Re, the principal operating subsidiary of Transatlantic Holdings, Inc., is now stable.

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