Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services has changed the ratings of 2 life insurers.
S&P, New York, has cut the financial strength and counterparty credit ratings of Security Benefit Life Insurance Company to A, from A plus.
S&P also has cut the financial strength and counterparty credit ratings of First Security Benefit Life Insurance and Annuity Company of New York to A, from A plus.
Security Benefit Life and First Security both are units of Security Benefit Corp., Topeka, Kan.
Security Benefit recently acquired Rydex Investments, Rockville, Md., a well-known supplier of index funds and exchange traded funds.
The S&P downgrades reflect the possibility that the cost of the Rydex deal might reduce Security Benefit’s financial flexibility and the possibility that Security Benefit might have trouble integrating the Rydex operations, S&P says in an explanation of the rating moves.
In addition, S&P has placed the ratings of Security Benefit Life on CreditWatch “as a result of [the company's] high indirect exposure to subprime mortgages though collateralized debt obligations,” S&P says.