Metropolitan Life Insurance Company of New York said Thursday that it is buying GenAmerica Corp. of St. Louis, the parent of the troubled General American Life Insurance Co., for $1.2 billion.

GenAmerica, which has $29 billion of assets and stakes in Reinsurance Group of America and Conning Corp., had been under protection of the Missouri Department of Insurance since Aug. 11 after rating-agency downgrades spurred many investors to redeem short-term (bond) funding agreements.

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