In a down market, only the fittest survive. With financial guarantors facing downgrades and insolvency, Assured Guaranty is pooling its resources with the only other triple-A rated monoline, Financial Security Assurance (FSA).

This is an acquisition that Assured hopes will bring strength in size. "In this environment, bigger is better," said Sabra Purtill, managing director of global communications and investor relations for Assured. "Our core business is providing certainty to investors; we provide them with a guarantee. And it is clear in our minds, that to be a reliable provider of insurance in this market and going forward, you need to have big, stable, unquestionable balance sheet strength."

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