The quiet reshuffling of the lending industry following the 2008 credit crisis has seen Insurers emerge as the new financial supermarkets as the hunt for yield pushes them deeper into bank turf.
In 2015, MetLife, the largest U.S. life insurer, made more property loans than it ever has in its 148-year history. Chief Executive Officer Steve Kandarian said the company plans to keep expanding in 2016 because mortgages have “predictable income streams.” MetLife declined to comment. AIG has more than $20 billion allocated to commercial mortgages and is increasing its wager as it pulls out of poorly performing hedge funds. TIAA, led by Roger Ferguson, is the world’s largest investor in private debt, Preqin said. TIAA has also hired ex-Carlyle Group LP money managers to create a venture focused on lending to middle-market companies. A TIAA representative didn’t respond to requests for comment.