INSURANCE INDUSTRY AT A GLANCE
- The U.S. insurance industry’s net premiums written totaled $1.1 trillion in 2014, with premiums recorded by life/health (L/H) insurers accounting for 56 percent and premiums by property/casualty (P/C) insurers accounting for 44 percent, according to SNL Financial.
- P/C insurance consists primarily of auto, home and commercial insurance. Net premiums written for the sector totaled $502.6 billion in 2014.
- The L/H insurance sector consists primarily of annuities and life insurance. Net premiums written for the sector totaled $644.5 billion in 2014.
- Health insurance is generally considered separate. The sector includes private health insurance companies as well as government programs. P/C and L/H insurers also write some health insurance.
- There were 6,118 insurance companies in 2014 in the United States (including territories), including P/C (2,583), life/annuities (895), health (857), fraternal (85), title (56), risk retention groups (252) and other companies (1,390), according to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.
- Insurance carriers and related activities contributed $450.3 billion, or 2.6 percent, of U.S. gross domestic product in 2014, according to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis.
- The U.S. insurance industry employed 2.5 million people in 2015, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Of those, 1.5 million worked for insurance companies, including life and health insurers (851,100 workers), P/C insurers (599,700 workers) and reinsurers (25,100 workers). The remaining 1.1 million people worked for insurance agencies, brokers and other insurance-related enterprises.
- Total P/C cash and invested assets were $1.5 trillion in 2014, according to SNL Financial. L/H cash and invested assets totaled $3.6 trillion in 2014. The majority of these assets were in bonds (61 percent of P/C assets and 74 percent of L/H assets).
- P/C and L/H insurance companies paid $18.1 billion in premium taxes in 2014, or $57 for every person living in the United States, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce.
- P/C insurers paid out $15.5 billion in property losses related to catastrophes in 2014, compared with $12.9 billion in 2013, according to the Property Claims Services division of Verisk Analytics. There were 31 catastrophes in 2014, compared with 28 in 2013.
U.S. PROPERTY/CASUALTY AND LIFE/HEALTH INSURANCE PREMIUMS, 2014 (1)
EMPLOYMENT IN INSURANCE, 2006-2015
(Annual averages, 000)
A property/casualty insurer must maintain a certain level of surplus to underwrite risks. This financial cushion is known as “capacity.” When the industry is hit by high losses, such as a major hurricane, capacity is diminished. It can be restored by increases in net income, favorable investment returns, reinsuring more risk, and/or raising additional capital.
PROPERTY/CASUALTY INSURANCE INDUSTRY INCOME ANALYSIS, 2010-2014 (1)
TOP 10 WRITERS OF PROPERTY/CASUALTY INSURANCE BY DIRECT PREMIUMS WRITTEN, 2014
TOP 10 WRITERS OF LIFE INSURANCE/ANNUITIES BY DIRECT PREMIUMS WRITTEN, 2014
LIFE/HEALTH INSURANCE INDUSTRY INCOME STATEMENT, 2010-2014
($ billions, end of year)