U.S. commercial insurance lines are expected to continue to be in a state of transition in 2013, with the impact felt unevenly across various lines of business and client profiles, according to Marsh's US Insurance Market Report 2013.
"I think, for clients, it's important to be really organized for meetings with key underwriters and getting to the marketplace early with a complete marketplace submission," said Dean Klisura, U.S. Risk Practices and Specialties leader at Marsh.
"It's all about differentiating your risk in the marketplace and making key underwriters understand your risk profile and how it differs from that of your peers," he said.
While the impact of Superstorm Sandy is projected to cause up to $25 billion in insurance losses, it has not had a "meaningful impact on the overall state of the property insurance market," said Klisura.
"Some 40 percent of our clients are still getting no rate changes or rate reductions in the property market," he said. At the same time, underwriters are focusing more intently on flood exposure, particularly in the Northeast, raising the attachment point and looking at flood sublimits.
Klisura also pointed to workers' compensation, and directors' and officers' insurance as two lines that may challenge insureds.
Workers' comp insurance is "significantly underwater from a profit perspective," he said. However, the "overabundance of capacity" has resulted in a fairly stable marketplace.
As for the D&O marketplace, it remains "very competitive," he said, but some companies, particularly financial institutions, are seeing double-digit rate increases and restrictive terms.
That shouldn't be too surprising following the ongoing scandals, investigations and settlements in the financial sector.
--By Anne Freedman
March 1, 2013
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