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While a deal that would see HSBC Holdings plc sell its 15.57% stake in China’s Ping An Insurance Co. to a Thailand conglomerate appears to be in trouble, industry analysts say Ping An would be little affected by such a setback, according to a story in the new BestWeek Asia-Pacific.
HSBC is looking to sell its stake in Ping An to Thailand’s Charoen Pokphand Group for HK$72.4 billion (US$9.4 billion), but state-owned China Development Bank is seen as likely to reject financing for the deal as the bank is reported to be doubtful about the sources of some of the funding. Doubts about the funding are raising concerns about the China Insurance Regulatory Commission’s approval of the deal, which is due Feb. 1. A.M. Best Asia-Pacific senior financial analyst Michael Wong said “there should not be any major effect on the operations of Ping An in the short term, except the negative impact to the share price observed in the past week.” Wong also discusses other aspects of the deal and what it means.
Also featured in BestWeek Asia-Pacific, a surprising lesson emerged from the rubble of the Canterbury earthquakes for New Zealand’s life insurance industry — insurers discovered that only 60% of Canterbury earthquake victims had life insurance, according to Financial Services Council, a life and financial services trade body. The finding suggests a significant coverage gap in the country’s life market.
BestWeek is published by A.M. Best Co. for insurance professionals. To subscribe, visit www.ambest.com/sales/BestWeek.
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Founded in 1899, A.M. Best Co. is the world’s oldest and most authoritative insurance rating and information source. For more information, visit www.ambest.com.
Copyright © 2013 by A.M. Best Company, Inc. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
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