New life business bounces back
New business in the four key life insurance products bounced back strongly in the June quarter after an extremely weak March quarter and was up 5.3% from the June quarter last year.
Monday, August 20th 2012, 9:40PM 1 Comment
by Jenny Ruth
However, for a third successive quarter lapses and surrenders exceeded the new business written by Financial Services Council members.
FSC members include all the major life companies, bar Partners Life. However, as reported here, Partners is joining the council.
The latest FSC data combined with Partners Life figures show total new business in term, trauma, replacement income and lump sum disablement policies totalled $47.7 million in the June quarter compared with $33.1 million in the March quarter and $45.3 million in the June quarter last year.
Excluding Partners Life, new business written by FSC members in the June quarter was down 8.3% on the June quarter last year.
Partners lifted new business to $7.9 million in the latest quarter, up from $6.29 million in the March quarter and from $1.88 million in the June quarter last year.
That's taken Partners' market share to 16.58%.
Lapses and surrenders for FSC members totalled $50.96 million in the June quarter compared with $$41.94 million in the March quarter and $41.92 million in the December quarter when FSC members' new business totalled $41.3 million.
FSC chief executive Peter Neilson says while the market is showing some growth, "there is vigorous competition for market share and most customers are currently very cost conscious."
"It's a very tough environment for people spending any money. People are looking at their policies and deciding whether to keep them."
This is a departure from the norm when insurance products tend to be "buy and forget. It hasn't been something people have reviewed all that frequently," Neilson says.
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