China’s insurance industry generated total insurance premium income of CNY1.007trn ($158bn) in the first eight months of 2011, China’s official news agency Xinhua has reported, quoting data from the China Insurance Regulatory Commission (CIRC).
The total was virtually unchanged from total premium income of CNY1.1trn reported in the first eight months of 2010.
The industry’s performance in the first eight months of 2011 represented a significant decline in momentum compared with the first half of the year which saw total premium income increase by 13% compared with the first half of 2010.
The big disappointment in the first eight months of 2011 came from the life insurance sector where premium income came in at CNY698.8bn, 6.4% down on the CNY746.9bn reported by the CIRC in the same period in 2010.
Premium income in the general insurance sector increased by 17.2% in the first eight months of 2011 to CNY308.2bn.
The sharp slowdown in China’s life industry has been reflected in significant declines in the share prices of leading players in recent months.
China’s largest life insurer China Life’s share price has halved since November 2010, while the share price of China’s second-largest life insurer Ping An has slumped by more than 60% since the end of 2010.