Hannover R?ckversicherung A.G. sees the recession producing reinsurance lemonade in the life and health reinsurance markets.

“Owing to a visible weakening in the solvency position of life insurers, demand for reinsurance solutions continued to rise,” Hannover Re, Hannover, Germany, says in a comment on its first-half financial results. “This state of affairs was especially evident in the United States, where the insurance industry had suffered considerable erosion of its capital base.”

Hannover Re is reporting that first-half operating profits increased to the equivalent of $840 million, up from $630 million for the first half of 2008, based on an exchange rate of 1 euro =$1.40 in U.S. currency for the 2009 results, and an exchange rate of 1 euro=$1.58 in U.S. currency for the 2008 results.

Both the underwriting and the investment side of the business have been doing well, Hannover Re reports.

A large acquisition has helped Hannover Re expand in the United States, and the U.S. seniors’ health market and U.S. financial solutions sector are especially attractive, the company says.

“Hannover Re will continue to expand its involvement in the field of enhanced annuities and intends to extend its activities to the North American market during the current financial year,” the company says.