Swiss Re’s hybrid issue gets equity classification

Swiss Re’s $750 million hybrid capital security issued on May 4 gained a preliminary classification as common stock for regulatory capital purposes.

The move, which follows a similar ruling in March over a Lehman Brothers hybrid, makes it more expensive for insurance companies to own the security. Until recently, insurance companies were buying around 20% of new hybrid issuance.

Bankers had not expected the structure of Swiss Re’s hybrid to get the equity classification due to its relatively

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