2021 Property and Casualty Insurance Premium Report Highlights Resilience

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The financial headlines of early 2022 were filled with bad news.

Inflation, supply chain issues, staff and product shortages, global political strife, diminishing pandemic pressures, and rising house and car prices are just a few of the issues contributing currently to economic volatility.

But not necessarily in the world of insurance. In a demonstration of the industry’s historic resilience, the 2021 premium reports compiled by S&P Global Market Intelligence reveals that many insurance companies experienced notable premium growth in several P&C lines of business, particularly commercial lines, during the 12-month reporting period.

“The growth rate is really the headline of the last year,” says Tim Zawacki, senior research analyst for the U.S. insurance industry at S&P Global Market Intelligence. “The amount of rate increases and the momentum of the economic recovery have combined for a remarkable expansion in written premiums.”

In fact, overall premium growth in 2021 in the U.S. property and casualty insurance industry was the highest since 2003, Zawacki says. “Long-time industry watchers will tell you it was an exceptionally difficult market environment.”

What factors contributed to this notable growth? Pandemic relief efforts deployed at the end

2020, strength of business lines despite pandemic pressures and business interruption cover litigation, and resilience among a variety of P&C insurers, not just those considered the biggest fish in the industry.

“It wasn’t necessarily the biggest companies that were driving growth,” confirms Zawacki. “It was more (about) the rate of expansion among the top 20-50 groups.”

He adds that many of the top 10 insurers rely on specific lines of business, namely personal auto, to support their budget results, while some of the smaller insurers offer a more diverse product menu or offer specialized covers.

“It really drives home how well companies have been able to generate favorable price movement in their trading lines,” Zawacki adds. “It was kind of a rising tide that lifts all boat scenarios.”

The following interactive charts illustrate the 2021 Top 100 U.S. Insurance Groups, the Top 100 U.S. Insurance Companies, as well as the top performing insurers in various lines of the P&C insurance business. Zawacki expects this premium growth to continue through 2022, with the real impact of general rate increases showing up late this year and early 2023.

For now, the story of the 2021 insurance premium reports is one that illustrates the courage and necessity of insurance products as well as the strength of the U.S. economy as a whole.

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