Simple Fact: AGO is #1, MBIA is a distant #2 & That has to hurt MBIA, a lot.
mbia has a market cap of about $2.1 b on a good day. ago (assured guaranty) has a market cap of $3.1 b on a bad day. ago has a market cap of 50% more than mbia -- it is bigger. for those who think having more contingent liabilities (mbia) is a good thing, you haven't followed the countrywide saga -- the biggest contingent liability machine ever -- which has cost bank of america, yes the lawsuits here, billions. big companies (exxon, apple, etc.) are measured by assets and equity, not liabilities or contingent ones. those who look at mbia at the biggest don't understand basic financial analysis but rely on mbia saying they are the biggest. it is true, mbia has the largest contingent liabilities in the space. and few assets and less equity to support them and thus, the mess we see. ago has wilber ross and more billions behind it. the monoline model is broken but if it returns, ago will be the winner as mbia is too financially weak to compete. if the biz doesn't come back, both are dogs but ago is worth more than price in run-off and mbia is not. i'm long ago and short mbia. it's a hedge with benefits. rm