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DUFF & PHELPS RATES NORTHWESTERN NATIONAL LIFE

 -- Northwestern National Life Insurance Company
 Claims Paying Ability Rating Reaffirmed at "AA"
 -- Northern Life Insurance Company
 Claims Paying Ability Rating Reaffirmed at "AA"
 -- North Atlantic Life Insurance Company
 Claims Paying Ability Rating Reaffirmed at "AA"
 -- NWNL Companies, Inc.
 Preferred Stock Reaffirmed at "A-"
 -- Washington Square Capital, Inc.
 Commercial Paper Reaffirmed at Duff 1
 -- NWNL Companies, Inc.
 Senior Debt Downgraded to "A" from "A+"
 CHICAGO, April 2 /PRNewswire/ -- Duff & Phelps Credit Rating Co. today reaffirmed the "AA" (Double-A) claims paying ability rating of Northwestern National Life Insurance Company (Northwestern) and it's two wholly owned subsidiaries Northern Life Insurance Company (Northern) and North Atlantic Life Insurance Company (North Atlantic).
 Affirmation of the claims paying ability ratings recognizes the success of management initiatives over the last few years to narrow business focus, reduce overhead expenses, strengthen surplus and improve asset quality.
 The preferred stock rating of "A-" (Single-A-Minus) is reaffirmed and the Washington Square Capital commercial paper rating, which is guaranteed by Northwestern National, remains at Duff-1.
 While the company's fixed charge coverage improved in 1992 as a result of both a decrease in its debt service obligations (the early retirement of 25 percent of its long term debt) and an increase in earnings, the senior debt rating of the parent company was downgraded to bring it in line with industry norms. Nevertheless, the company has made significant improvements in its overall fundamentals.
 -0- 4/2/93
 /CONTACT: Martha M. Butler, CFA of Duff & Phelps Credit Rating Co., 312-368-3191/


CO: Northwestern National Life Insurance Company ST: Minnesota IN: INS SU: RTG

TS -- NY069 -- 2662 04/02/93 16:37 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Apr 2, 1993
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