The soft market may be limited in length and severity, though that would be surprising, according to the latest analysis of commercial insurance pricing from online insurance exchange MarketScout.
The comments came as MarketScout reported that the composite rate for U.S. commercial property/casualty insurance declined by 2 percent in April, compared to a 3 percent decline in March and minus 4 percent in January and February 2016.
Richard Kerr, CEO of MarketScout observed:
“It seems we may have a reversal of sentiment. Rates are moderating. We are only seven months into a soft market that has so far yielded a maximum composite rate decrease of minus 4 percent.”
Kerr also noted:
“A limited soft market would be a bit surprising noting the current ample market capacity; however, more sophisticated underwriting tools seem to be limiting market swings.”
Rates changed in most coverage classifications with property, business interruption, BOP, inland marine, workers’ compensation, general liability, and fiduciary all moderating by 1 percent as compared to March.
Umbrella, auto, D&O, EPLI, crime, professional and surety were unchanged, according to MarketScout.
By account size, rates for small accounts (under $25,000) were down 1 percent from March to April. All other account sizes were down 2 percent in April 2016, compared to minus 4 percent in March 2016.
By coverage classification, transportation accounts adjusted more than any other industry classification from minus 4 percent in March 2016 to minus 2 percent in April 2016. Manufacturing, habitational, public entity and energy accounts all moderated 1 percent in April, while contracting and service accounts remained unchanged.
Here’s the visual by coverage classification:
Check out this post over at Artemis blog for more on why the moderation in commercial insurance rates is unlikely to persist.
The Insurance Information Institute has further information with financial results and commentary on the p/c insurance industry here.