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Insurance industry saw rebound in 2009, says study

Posted On Thu, March 11, 2010

Despite the recession and limited finances by many during 2009, a new survey has found that property and casualty life insurance sales saw a spike in business during the year.

A Data Performance Monitor released Thursday by Highline Data, which is a part of Summit Business Media, found that the property & casualty industry saw its net income increase from $9.4 billion on 2008 to $35 billion in 2009. While impressive, it still paled in comparison to the $73.2 billion in profits seen in 2006.

Similarly, the life insurance industry saw its net income increased drastically as well, jumping from $17.6 billion in 2008 to $76.2 billion in 2009.

The significant increase in profits was attributed to a 16 percent decrease in the numbers of premiums written,which outnumbered the 14 percent decrease in the amount of benefits that were paid over the course of the year.

"Our findings suggest that property and casualty companies will continue to strive to contain expenses and further reduce their combined ratios while life companies will continue to rebuild capital and improve investment yields this year," said Laurie Dallaire, vice president and director of Highline Data.

The survey also found that casualty insurers saw their profits rise because there were no major disasters that occurred during the year, minimizing how much they were required to pay out.

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