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Global insurance rates consistently lower in second quarter 2015

Global Insurance Market Quarterly Briefing – August 2015


Declines mark the ninth consecutive quarter of decreases, but there were exceptions in specialized lines.

Commercial insurance rates decreased across the globe in most lines of business in the second quarter of 2015, according to our Global Insurance Market Quarterly Briefing – August 2015. Competitive market conditions – characterized by an abundance of global capacity and a lack of large insured loss activity resulting in reported underwriting results with favorable combined ratios – helped account for the ninth consecutive quarter of rate decreases.

Decreases were seen across regions and in most major lines of business. Notable exceptions were seen in specialized coverages, led by a firming cyber insurance market.

According to the report:

  • Asia-Pacific experienced the largest composite rate decrease, followed by the United Kingdom, Continental Europe, Latin America, and the United States.
  • Demand for transactional risk insurance continued to grow in the first half of 2015, with an overall increase of 15% year-on-year in terms of limits placed by Marsh.
  • Surplus levels typically remained at or near record levels during the second quarter.
  • Historically low levels of natural catastrophe losses globally are helping remove near-term catalysts for increased rates.

The report also examines components of the insurance pricing environment: capital committed to the market, insurer profitability, insurer pricing methodologies, and global-impact losses.