Apollo Global Management LLC cleared a major hurdle Wednesday in its purchase of Aviva USA by winning approval from New York's financial regulator, Reuters reported. Apollo has agreed to "enhanced" safeguards for policyholders as part of Athene Holding Ltd.'s planned purchase of the New York subsidiary of Aviva USA, the New York Department of Financial Services announced. The new policyholder protections include higher capital standards, greater disclosure and enhanced regulatory scrutiny. Apollo announced in December 2012 that it would acquire Aviva USA, the West Des Moines-based subsidiary of Aviva PLC, for $1.55 billion. The Iowa Insurance Division, which must also approve the acquisition, will post its decision later today, a division spokesman said.