Insurance Handbook

World Life And Nonlife Insurance In 2017

Outside the United States, the insurance industry is divided into life and nonlife, or general insurance, rather than life/health and property/casualty. Swiss Re’s 2017 world insurance study is based on direct premium data from 147 countries, with detailed information on the largest 88 markets. World insurance premiums rose 1.5 percent in 2017, adjusted for inflation, down from 2.2 percent in 2016. Nonlife premiums slowed to 2.8 percent growth in 2017, adjusted for inflation, from 3.3 percent growth in 2016. Life insurance premiums grew by 0.5 percent after inflation in 2017, slower than the 1.4 percent growth reported for 2016.

 

Top 10 Countries By Life And Nonlife Direct Premiums Written, 2017 (1)

(US$ millions)

        Total premiums
Rank Country Life premiums Nonlife premiums (2) Amount Percent change
from prior year
Percent of total
world premiums
1 United States (3), (4) $546,800 $830,315 $1,377,114 -0.1% 28.15%
2 P.R. China (5) 317,570 223,876 541,466 16.2 11.07
3 Japan (4), (6) 307,232 114,818 422,050 –6.5 8.63
4 United Kingdom (4) 189,833 93,499 283,331 –2.6 5.79
5 France (8) 153,520 88,083 241,603 1.8 4.94
6 Germany (7), (8) 96,973 126,005 222,978 3.8 4.56
7 South Korea (4), (6) 102,839 78,378 181,218 2.4 3.70
8 Italy (4) 113,947 41,562 155,509 –2.6 3.18
9 Canada (4), (9) 51,592 67,927 119,520 5.5 2.44
10 Taiwan 98,602 18,873 117,474 15.8 2.40

(1) Before reinsurance transactions.
(2) Includes accident and health insurance.
(3) Nonlife premiums include state funds; life premiums include an estimate of group pension business.
(4) Estimated.
(5) Provisional.
(6) April 1, 2017 to March 31, 2018.
(7) Life premiums are estimated.
(8) Nonlife premiums are provisional.
(9) Life premiums are net premiums.

Source: Swiss Re, sigma, No. 3/2018.

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World Life And Nonlife Insurance Direct Premiums Written, 2017 (1)

(US$ billions)

(1) Before reinsurance transactions.
(2) Includes accident and health insurance.

Source: Swiss Re, sigma, No. 3/2018.

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World Life And Nonlife Insurance Direct Premiums Written, 2015-2017 (1)

(US$ millions)

Year Life Nonlife (2) Total
2015 $2,543,100 $2,056,752 $4,599,853
2016 2,581,972 2,120,869 4,702,841
2017 2,657,270 2,234,424 4,891,694

(1) Before reinsurance transactions.
(2) Includes accident and health insurance.

Source: Swiss Re, sigma database, sigma No. 3/2018.

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Top 10 Countries By Total Insurance Premiums Per Capita and Percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), 2017 (1)

Rank Country Total premiums
per capita
Rank Country Total premiums
as a percent of GDP
1 Cayman Islands $12,122 1 Taiwan 21.32%
2 Hong Kong 8,313 2 Cayman Islands 19.61
3 Switzerland 6,811 3 Hong Kong 17.94
4 Denmark 5,772 4 South Africa 13.75
5 Luxembourg 5,011 5 South Korea (2) 11.57
6 Taiwan 4,997 6 Finland 10.65
7 Singapore 4,749 7 Denmark 10.21
8 Finland 4,737 8 United Kingdom 9.58
9 Ireland 4,687 9 Netherlands 9.56
10 Netherlands 4,631 10 France 8.95
  Total world $650   Total world 6.13%

(1) Includes nonlife and life insurance and cross-border business.
(2) April 1, 2017 to March 31, 2018.

Source: Swiss Re, sigma, No. 3/2018.

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