AM Best has affirmed the Financial Strength Rating (FSR) of A (Excellent) and the Long-Term Issuer Credit Ratings (Long-Term ICR) of “a” (Excellent) of the members of Donegal Insurance Group (Donegal Group). Concurrently, AM Best has affirmed the Long-Term ICR of “bbb” (Good) of the publicly traded holding company, Donegal Group Inc. (Delaware) [NASDAQ: DGICA and DGICB]. The outlook of these Credit Ratings (ratings) is stable. (See below for a detailed listing of the member companies.)
The ratings reflect Donegal Group’s balance sheet strength, which AM Best assesses as very strong, as well as its adequate operating performance, neutral business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management (ERM).
Donegal Group’s balance sheet strength assessment reflects its risk-adjusted capitalization at the strongest level, as measured by Best’s Capital Adequacy Ratio (BCAR), and its sound liquidity position, conservative investment portfolio, a comprehensive reinsurance program and stabilized loss reserving trends, which are partially offset by elevated underwriting leverage and modest stockholders’ dividend payments.
Although the individual members within Donegal Group play a specific role in the organization’s overall business plan, and their operating performances vary, each contributes favorably to the group’s risk-adjusted capitalization. In addition, each member supports the corporate business strategy and benefits from shared senior management, intercompany reinsurance and the added financial flexibility of Donegal Group Inc. to raise capital through debt or equity offerings during favorable investment markets.
Donegal Group’s adequate operating performance assessment reflects improved operating performance in recent years (2019-2021), primarily driven by a number of initiatives implemented by management to help improve its underwriting performance, including significant rate actions, the transfer of unprofitable accounts and investing in new technology. However, the group’s five-year combined ratio average slightly lags the property/casualty insurance industry’s composite average.
Donegal Group’s neutral business profile assessment reflects its geographic and product line diversification, effective use of technology in the independent agency distribution channel, and a history of successful expansion through strategic acquisitions and affiliations.
Donegal Group’s appropriate ERM is demonstrated through a formal risk management process, which provides assurances that the organization’s key compliance, financial and operational risks are addressed in meeting organizational objectives. Additionally, Donegal Group purchases various excess of loss and per risk reinsurance treaties from high quality reinsurers to protect surplus, reduce volatility and increase capacity.
The affirmation of the Long-Term ICR of Donegal Group Inc. recognizes the overall financial strength of its property/casualty insurance operations, its modest amount of financial leverage and the subordination of its creditors to the insurance companies’ policyholders.
The FSR of A (Excellent) and the Long Term ICRs of “a” (Excellent) have been affirmed, with stable outlooks for the following members of Donegal Insurance Group:
- Atlantic States Insurance Company
- Donegal Mutual Insurance Company
- Michigan Insurance Company
- Mountain States Commercial Insurance Company
- Mountain States Indemnity Company
- Peninsula Indemnity Company
- Peninsula Insurance Company
- Southern Insurance Company of Virginia
- Southern Mutual Insurance Company
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 Guide to Best's Credit Ratings. For information on the proper use of Best’s Credit Ratings, Best’s Performance Assessments, Best’s Preliminary Credit Assessments and AM Best press releases, please view Guide to Proper Use of Best’s Ratings & Assessments.
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