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Second Quarter RIMS Benchmark Survey Shows Commercial Insurance Premiums Under Pressure 7/28/2009


However, depletion of insurance capacity signals rising commercial insurance rates

Despite poor financial results, insurance companies continued to compete vigorously for business in the second quarter, according to RIMS Benchmark Survey™. General liability and workers' compensation policies both posted average decreases in renewal premiums. Directors and officers liability (D&O) policies renewed at higher premiums on average, but the increase was due to financial sector companies, a segment that has been bloodied by the subprime mortgage meltdown and credit crisis. Property policies renewed at essentially no change.

Workers' compensation recorded a 2.8 percent average decrease in renewal premiums, as compared to a 1.7 percent drop in the second quarter of 2008, and general liability posted a 1.1 percent drop as compared to nearly a 5 percent decline a year ago. D&O increased 2.9 percent, a reversal of the 6.4 percent average decrease in the second quarter of 2008. However, excluding financial services companies, D&O policies renewed with a 4.1 percent average decrease. Property premiums fell less than 1 percent, which compares to a 6.1 percent drop in the second quarter of 2008.

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