A.M. Best Assigns Debt Rating to MetLife, Inc.’s Senior Unsecured Debentures
A.M. Best has assigned a debt rating of “a-” to the $1.0 billion Series E senior component debentures of MetLife, Inc. (MetLife) (New York, NY) [NYSE: MET]. The outlook assigned is stable. The securities have been remarketed in two tranches in a transaction that is expected to settle on October 7, 2014. (Please see below for a detailed listing of debt ratings.)
The Series E debentures were originally issued in November 2010, and formed part of MetLife’s 40 million common equity units that were issued in connection with MetLife’s acquisition of American Life Insurance Company and Delaware American Life Insurance Company. In September 2012, $1.0 billion Series C senior debentures were remarketed in two tranches — $500 million due December 2017 and $500 million due December 2022. In September 2013, Series D senior debentures were remarketed with the securities having a stated maturity of September 2023.
Proceeds of the remarketing will be paid to the holders of the common equity units who participated in the remarketing. MetLife will ultimately receive $1.0 billion in the aggregate from the proceeds of the remarketing (and from holders that elected not to participate in the remarketing) in return for delivering newly-issued shares of MetLife common stock to all holders of common equity units upon settlement of the related stock purchase contracts. A.M. Best notes that MetLife’s adjusted financial leverage is minimally impacted by this transaction and is expected to remain below 30% in the near to medium term. Moreover, MetLife’s financial flexibility remains strong and interest coverage is expected to be in the 5-7 times range for 2014.
The following debt ratings have been assigned:
— “a-” on $500 million 1.903% senior unsecured debentures to be due December 2017
— “a-” on $500 million 4.721% senior unsecured debentures to be due December 2044
The methodology used in determining these ratings is Best’s Credit Rating Methodology, which provides a comprehensive explanation of A.M. Best’s rating process and contains the different rating criteria employed in the rating process. Best’s Credit Rating Methodology can be found at www.ambest.com/ratings/methodology. Additional key criteria utilized include:
o Analyzing Insurance Holding Company Liquidity
o Equity Credit For Hybrid Securities
o Insurance Holding Company and Debt Ratings
A.M. Best Company is the world’s oldest and most authoritative insurance rating and information source. For more information, visit www.ambest.com.
Copyright (c) 2014 by A.M. Best Company, Inc. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
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