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AM Best Affirms Credit Ratings of Independence Holding Company and Its Subsidiaries

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AM Best has affirmed the Financial Strength Rating (FSR) of A- (Excellent) and the Long-Term Issuer Credit Ratings (Long-Term ICR) of "a-" of the subsidiaries of Independence Holding Company (collectively referred to as Independence Holding Company Group) (headquartered in Stamford, CT) (NYSE:IHC). (See below for a detailed list of companies.) Concurrently, AM Best has affirmed the Long-Term ICR of "bbb-" of Independence Holding Company. The outlook of these Credit Ratings (ratings) is stable.

The ratings reflect Independence Holding Company Group's balance sheet strength, which A.M. Best categorizes as strongest, as well as its adequate operating performance, limited business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management.

The group maintains the strongest level of risk-adjusted capitalization, based on its Best's Capital Adequacy Ratio (BCAR) results and other favorable balance sheet metrics, including its liquidity measures. The group's operating performance generally has been driven in recent years by favorable earnings, as it has made a substantial shift in its product mix to higher margin lines of business. Since the group's exit from the medical stop-loss business in 2016, it has focused on profitably growing premium as a niche market carrier with its remaining specialty health and group benefits products. These insurance coverages include short-term medical, hospital indemnity, New York State disability benefits (DBL) and paid family leave (PFL), short- and long-term disability, pet insurance, group life, limited benefit medical and GAP insurance, dental and vision.

Offsetting rating factors include its limited business profile, as the group continues to build competitive advantages and its market position in its current suite of specialty health products. Competition in the supplemental health and group benefits markets remains highly elevated, which may hinder somewhat the group's growth in these markets. In addition, extremely uncertain regulatory and legislative environments may negatively impact some of the group's specialty health lines of business, such as short-term medical.

The FSR A- (Excellent) and the Long-Term ICRs of "a-" have been affirmed for the following members of the Independence Holding Company Group:

  • Independence American Insurance Company
  • Madison National Life Insurance Company, Inc.
  • Standard Security Life Insurance Company of New York

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 Understanding Best's Credit Ratings. For information on the proper media use of Best's Credit Ratings and AM Best press releases, please view Guide for Media - Proper Use of Best's Credit Ratings and AM Best Rating Action Press Releases.

AM Best is a global rating agency and information provider with a unique focus on the insurance industry. Visit www.ambest.com for more information.

Copyright © 2018 by A.M. Best Rating Services, Inc. and/or its affiliates. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

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