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Another $490m of alternative capital pours into reinsurance

News of nearly half a billion dollars of new alternative reinsurance capital emerged yesterday, as the flow of third-party money into the industry continues unabated.

The Bermuda Stock Exchange (BSX) announced the listing of $290 million worth of notes through Eden Re II Ltd, a Bermuda special purpose insurer (SPI), reportedly a sidecar providing capacity to the world's largest reinsurer Munich Re.

Amlin, the British insurer with an underwriting operation in Bermuda, has acquired $200 million worth of coverage from another Island-based SPI, Tramline Re II Ltd, which is now placing catastrophe bonds of an equal amount, also listed on the BSX.

The nominal value of insurance-linked securities outstanding had risen to $19.5 billion by the end of the third quarter, according to the Bermuda Monetary Authority, with around 40 per cent of that issued by Bermuda SPIs.

A busy fourth quarter has brought global outstanding ILS value up to nearly $25 billion and this year's issuance up to around $8.72 billion, according to the artemis.bm website, which closely monitors alternative risk transfer activities.

Even though returns from ILS are falling as more capital pours into the space, there appears to be no shortage of institutional investors.

The influx of third-party capital is one of the factors pushing down reinsurance rates and squeezing the underwriting margins of traditional reinsurance companies, along with lower than normal catastrophe incidence.

In January last year, Eden Re provided $63 million of capacity to Munich Re. There is no confirmation that the significantly larger Eden Re II issuance was on behalf of Munich Re, but the German giant has made clear its intentions to ramp up its leveraging of third-party capital.

The Tramline Re II catastrophe bond will provide $200 million worth of coverage for US named storm, US earthquake and European windstorm perils on behalf of Amlin.

The transaction provides Amlin with fully collateralised protection over a four-year period from January 1, 2015.

It replaces Tramline Re protection placed in 2010 which expires with effect from December 31, 2014.

Coverage: Most of the alternative capital pouring into the industry helps reinsurers provide coverage for disasters like Hurricane Katrina (pictured)

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Published December 23, 2014 at 8:00 am (Updated December 22, 2014 at 7:51 pm)

Another $490m of alternative capital pours into reinsurance

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