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Travelers Ordered by Texas to Halt ‘Deceptive’ Ad

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July 8 (Bloomberg) -- Travelers Cos., the insurer in the Dow Jones Industrial Average, was told to halt an ad the Texas attorney general said misleads consumers about the risk of losing their homes if they have inadequate auto coverage.

Attorney General Greg Abbott demanded that the “deceptive” advertisement from the insurer be removed from all television markets and print media in the state, according to an e-mailed statement from his office today.

Each airing of the ad could cost New York-based Travelers $20,000 in civil penalties, based on the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act, Abbott said. State law protects Texans from losing their homes because of uninsured losses from a traffic accident, he said.

“Because the state already protects homeowners, it is improper for Travelers to scare Texans into buying insurance they may not need,” Abbott said in the statement.

A version of the ad provided by the attorney general depicts a man driving his home on the highway, then crashing. “A crash might impact more than your car,” it says. “Make sure you’re properly covered, so when you’re driving your car you’re not risking your house.”

Shane Boyd, a spokesman for Travelers, didn’t immediately return a call for comment.

To contact the reporter on this story: Sarah Frier in New York at sfrier@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dan Kraut at dkraut2@bloomberg.net