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Commercial lines show “varied” rate changes in May: IVANS

7th June 2019 - Author: Matt Sheehan

Commercial lines rate movements were “varied” across the month of May, according to the latest IVANS Index, with mixed results across the major lines of business.

PositiveIVANS, which is a division of Applied Systems, observed an uptick in premium renewal rates for BOP, General Liability, and Commercial Property.

In contrast, Commercial Auto, Umbrella and Workers’ Compensation experience a downtick in rate movement month-over-month.

BOP rates increased from 4.12% at the end of April to 4.26% at the end of May, while General Liability improved from 2.18% to 2.46%.

Similarly, Commercial Property rates increased from 3.69% in April to 3.82% in May.

Meanwhile, Commercial Auto decreased from 4.33% last month to 4.28%, while Umbrella slid from 2.59% to 2.52%.

Workers’ Compensation rate also decreased in May and remained negative overall, moving from -3.77% to -3.86%.

“The latest IVANS Index results show varied changes among all commercial lines, with General Liability experiencing the greatest increase month over month since April,” said Brian Wood, Vice President of Data Products Group, IVANS Insurance Services.

“IVANS Index continues to enable agents to advise clients on expected policy renewal premium changes while providing the market intelligence insurers need to support pricing decisions.”

Analysts at KBW noted that premium renewal increases were still up year-on-year for all lines except Workers’ Compensation, and expects most other lines to see an acceleration in rate increases through 2019.

“We think P&C pricing primarily depends on whether expected returns are adequate for incremental capital providers, rather than absolute capital levels,” they stated.

“For commercial casualty lines (for which there’s very little third-party capital, at least so far), we think they’re mostly not, especially with reportedly accelerating loss trends, which points to accelerating rate increases overall. The key exception is Workers’ Compensation, for which sustained strong underwriting profitability is translating into steadily-decreasing rates.”

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