Insurers seek delay of fair value reporting

Several British life assurers are pushing for a delay of the changed
financial reporting rules which would dramatically reduce their profits and
valuations after pressure on their balance sheets from weak stock and bond

Companies that write big numbers of annuity contracts such as Prudential,
Legal & General and Aviva are likely to be particularly hard hit by the
change, analysts have told the Financial Times.

European life assurers are understood to plan a change by the end of next
year to the so-called market consistent embedded value. This is stricter than
the standard they use to value in-force policies, which would mean reporting
under MCEV in spring 2010.

But Denis Duverne, Axa finance director and chairman of the
CFO Forum, a group of
European finance directors spearheading the change, said some companies,
believed to be based in the UK, that had vowed to adopt early, now planned to
delay until 2009.

Further reading:

IASB round table pans ‘wooly’ fair value

the Financial Times story

Related reading

Fiona Westwood of Smith and Williamson.