19 Jan 2010

Swiss Re sells part of US business to Buffett

6:04 am on 19 January 2010

Swiss Re has sold a section of its US business to Berkshire Hathaway, the investment vehicle of billionaire Warren Buffett.

The Swiss reinsurance group has sold part of its US life insurance unit to Berkshire for 1.3 billion Swiss francs ($US1.27 billion).

The company said the sale frees up capital that it can invest more profitably elsewhere.

Mr Buffett already has a stake in Swiss Re among his many high profile investments.

Swiss Re said the deal would take effect retroactively on 1 October.

Reinsurance companies sell back up cover to other insurers, as a means for them to spread their risk.