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Sovereign predicting growth

Sovereign has retained its market dominance in the December quarter, the latest statistics from the  Financial Services Council reveal.

Monday, March 18th 2013, 6:00AM

by Susan Edmunds

It wrote 23% of new business in the quarter. New player Partners Life came in second place with 15% of all new risk business.

Sovereign's GM Strategy, Government and Insights Rebecca Russell says Sovereign is expecting new business growth of between 4% and 6% this year.

"The market has been relatively flat overall, but we believe this will change. We expect  to see growth in the adviser channel in New Zealand over the next two years of around 3% to 5% each year. The Bancassurance channel can expect growth of between 5% and 8%, but we believe this share will be higher as many New Zealand banks have an increased focus on insurance." 

Russell says there is also some potential in online sales, but that growth figures are difficult to project as much of the sales from online offerings are reported in adviser sales.

Partners Life also wrote 22.8% of value of new trauma business, second behind Sovereign’s 23.3%. That’s up from December quarter, when Partners Life accounted for 18.9% of new trauma business.

Partners Life wrote more than 5000 new contracts and had 2% of term life contracts at the end of the quarter.

It was responsible for 14% of new term risk business and replacement income business.

AIA had the highest average value of risk premium income of $1100, followed by Pinnacle, which came in at just under $1000.

BNZ, Onepath and Westpac reported the lowest average risk premium income. AIA and Westpac were the only insurers to lose market share in the December quarter.

Westpac said sales were the same for the quarter and the figures were not cause for any concern.

The December quarter as a whole reported 22% more new business than December 2011.

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