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November 2008 Archives

November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

Alexander Ferguson wrote:

Happy Thanksgiving!

In the USA, people across the nation are crowding round their Thanksgiving turkey and waiting to expend more energy eating than they probably did cooking the darned thing. See you all on the running machine on Saturday, chaps.

But the spirit of thankfulness is what everyone talks about. Some talk about being thankful for their jobs. Others their families. Some both.

But right now, thank God you're not an American or British citizen staying at the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel in Bombay.

November 20, 2008

Never been one to take advantage of a bad situation but....

Alexander Ferguson writes:

Only days into hijack talks between Somalian pirates and the owners of the stricken supertanker The Sirius Star, one very quick (it has to be said) broker (Benfield, cough! cough!) is offering "a dedicated and exclusive kidnap and ransom policy" with a $10m per event limit, indemifying the policyholder against kidnapping and extortion, lost ransom, and costs incurred resolving the situation.

Couldn't you have offered this at the start of the year, lads?

But if the money comes in, methinks that the new people at Beano (that's an anagram of Aon Benfield Re, according to City wit Roger Foord (nope, he doesn't know why his last name is spelt like that, either!) will be saying: "Better late than never".

November 18, 2008

Quack! Quack! Something to impressed about with Aflaaac!

Alexander Ferguson wrote:

If you've ever seen a big American sports event (by that we mean NFL, Baseball and College Football), there is always the Aflac trivia question. With the most annoying duck on the planet quacking away, the scream of "Aflaaaaaaac!" is something that will forever stick in the mind.

So here's my Aflac triva question for you:

"Which CEO has just made himself $26m poorer by forgoeing golden parachute provisions in his contract?"

Here's the answer:

Daniel Amos, chairman and CEO of Aflac.

I'm serious. In a world where investment banks CEOs are struggling to put their hands in their own wallet and making sure that they aren't paid to the hilt at a time where the world is collapsing around their ears and they are begging for bailouts, Mr Amos has done a pretty darned good thing.

Listen, we realise that the shareholders aren't too happy about the monster fall in revenues in the third quarter, and there would have been absolute outrage HAD he taken the money and run, but you know what? We can name a couple of US CEOs who have taken more while helping to implode their companies.

Now let's hope that when we get through all this rubbish Mr Amos won't become the 'Bad Duck' and demand $60m worth of golden parachutes, eh?

November 17, 2008

Goodbye, dear friend...

Alex Ferguson writes.....

I've never met Roy Harris, the founder of Reinsurance Magazine.

If I had, I would have said: "Thank you".

He wanted to create a journal of the reinsurance industry 40 years ago - we celebrate the big '40' in 2009 - and it's been going strong ever since.

I hope that this upcoming issue - and the tens after it, will have you still reading in heaven.

November 4, 2008

Happy US Election Day!!

Alexander Ferguson writes:

Happy Election Day, America!

And if (and quite possibly when) Barack Obama gets voted in, the Bermudian reinsurance industry may well worry.


If all the "sabre-rattlilng" comes to the fore, then Bermudian reinsurers could see themselves heavily taxed on their US premiums.

Ouch for companies such as Axis, XL and Flagstone, but ouch also for the American people as they see insurance prices rise as a result of the levy.

Anyways, the world sits and waits. Have a very Obama (or McCain) Tuesday....

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