Semester report from Insurance Sector in Nicaragua

Fitch Central America published its Special Report: "Nicaragua Insurance Sector: Semester Performance and Short Term Outlook."

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The Nicaraguan insurance sector has reversed the operating losses recorded in June 2007. The index of combined insurance coverage for the was reduced from 101% in June 2007 to 95.6% in June 2008, resulting in operating profit of C$23.1 million compared to the C$4.2 million in June of last year. The improvement is due to favorable performance in claims, and lower operating expenses.

Despite the decrease in the accident rate, the sector continues to be the least efficient in Central America.

Fitch has indicated positive results due to more adjustments of subscription policies and operating management control, especially for insurers that are linked to international groups that recently entered the market. Still, the result could be affected due to greater competition tension in prices, while taking into to account the reduced demanded estimated in the sector.

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Fitch Central America published a special report called "Central American Insurance Sector: Performance in the First Half of 2009 and Outlook for 2010".

Despite the economic contraction of Central American economies in the first half of 2009, the region's insurance industry grew 3% (excluding Panama) when compared to the same period of 2008, reaching $928.1 million in net premiums.

Insurance Industry in Costa Rica

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Fitch Rating's Special Report: "Insurance Industry Costa Rica: End of the State's Monopoly"

Costa Rica's insurance industry had been dominated by a state-owned monopoly until the new Insurance Law of 2008; up to December 2008 it is the largest and fastest growing market in Central America (excluding Panama).

Costa Rica Insurance Sector: credit-worthy and competitive

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Fitch's Special Report analyzes the characteristics, strengthens and performance for the current year and the short term outlook for the sector.

SUMMARY

The insurance sector is the biggest and has the greatest growth in the region.
At the end of the first semester of 2008, the net premiums of the INS added up to US$289.6 million, which makes this market the biggest in Central America (not including Panama), and it also had the greatest growth compared to June 2007 (28%), as a result of efforts by the INS to improve the placement of its products. These results by the sector (2.6% of the GDP) are due to a greater level of income and insurance culture compared to the region, and high priced subscriptions due to the lack of competition in the market...

Central American Banks: Biannual Results and Perspectives

August 2008

In Fitch's opinion (in the Special Report), the complex economic environment in the region is starting to have an effect on the performance of the banks in Central America.

"Results for the first half of 2008 indicate that the slump in the economy and the increase in inflation have weakened the quality of bank assets," indicated the report.

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