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From Bloomberg : Wachovia's BluePoint Insurance Unit Files Bankruptcy

By Bob Van Voris

Wachovia Corp.'s BluePoint Re Ltd. unit, which insures structured finance and municipal transactions, filed for bankruptcy protection, citing defaults on securitized mortgages.

BluePoint filed a petition in Manhattan yesterday, saying it has more than $100 million in debt. The insurer also filed a petition to liquidate in Bermuda, where it is based, on Aug. 7. BluePoint asked the New York court to recognize the Bermuda proceeding and protect it from claims in the U.S., invoking provisions of Chapter 15 of the federal bankruptcy code.

Wachovia, the fourth-biggest U.S. bank, reported a $330 million charge in the second half of 2007 related to BluePoint's losses on credit default swaps on collateralized debt obligations, or CDOs. BluePoint decided to liquidate after failing to negotiate a restructuring with banks including UBS AG that were counterparties to its swaps, according to court papers.

``Against a background of further deterioration in the credit markets, the plan could not be implemented before a further downgrade by the rating agencies,'' John C. McKenna, who was named provisional liquidator of BluePoint by a Bermuda court, said in a statement filed with the New York bankruptcy court.

BluePoint Re, the smallest reinsurer in the bond-insurance industry according to Moody's Investors Service, had its credit rating cut 14 levels to Ca from A2 by the agency yesterday. Moody's had lowered its rating two notches from Aa3 on July 11.