BlackRock to assess industry’s CMBS losses

Investment management firm BlackRock was hired by state insurance regulators to evaluate the industry’s potential losses from holding commercial mortgage-backed securities, Bloomberg news reported. By the end of the year, BlackRock will review more than 7,000 securities, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners said yesterday in a statement. The New York-based firm will calculate loss expectations for the holdings, which will determine how much capital insurers must hold to cushion potential declines, NAIC said. Insurance regulators are searching for an alternative to Moody’s Investors Service and Standard & Poor’s, whose ratings were cited by some as one cause of the financial crisis. BlackRock advised financial companies and governments during the credit crisis on how to value mortgage-related assets. It won the NAIC contract from among 16 bidders. [Bloomberg]

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