Application activity in the US individually underwritten life insurance sector in 2010 did not reflect what market players would like to see – an increase. But on a positive note, activity at least reflected only a modest decline, reveals data from research firm MIB.
Across all age groups, average year-on-year (Y-o-Y) application activity in December 2010 was 1.4% down, which MIB emphasised was less than the 3%-plus annual declines the industry experienced from 2006 to 2008.
However, application activity in December 2009 ended the year on a stronger note than in 2010, recording a 2.3% Y-o-Y increase.
Continuing a now well entrenched trend, in December 2010, Y-O-Y application activity was led by the 60-and-over age group which registered a 9.9% increase.
In the other groups, Y-o-Y application activity in December for ages up to 44 reflected a 4.4% decline, and for ages 45 to 59 a marginal 0.1% decline.
The longer-term picture is also particularly encouraging. MIB noted that the life industry’s emergence from the recession was marked in the final two quarters of 2009 by Y-O-Y increases of 0.3% and 2.9%, respectively, followed by a Y-o-Y increase of 1.3% in the first quarter of 2010.
Thereafter, the recovery faded with Y-o-Y declines in the second, third and fourth quarters of 2010 of 1.8%, 2.6%, and 1.8%, respectively.