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US Commercial Insurance Prices Up

Businessman climbing up-SF
June 14, 2018

A recent commercial lines insurance pricing survey from Willis Towers Watson compared prices charged on policies written during the first quarter of 2018 with those charged for the same coverage during the equivalent quarter in 2017. Price changes were in excess of 1 percent for the first time in 11 quarters, breaking the moderating trend in price increases observed since 2013.

Data for three standard lines—commercial auto, commercial property, and excess/umbrella liability—indicated fairly significant price increases in the first quarter. Commercial property price data, which had been showing small price decreases in the recent past, now indicate increases in the low- to mid-single digits for the second consecutive quarter. The outlier in the survey findings continues to be commercial auto, with price increases nearing double digits for the second consecutive quarter. The survey indicates ongoing price reductions for workers compensation, in contrast to all other surveyed lines. Price changes were positive across all account sizes, as mid-market and large accounts pricing indications moved closer to the recently larger increases reported for small accounts.

"Commercial insurance prices trended upward across nearly all lines during the first quarter of 2018, with aggregate price changes crossing the 1 percent threshold for the first time in almost 3 years," said Pierre Laurin, Americas property and casualty (P&C) sales and product leader for Insurance Consulting and Technology, Willis Towers Watson. "Workers compensation was the only line showing a downward price trend, as claims frequency declines and workplace safety continues to improve."
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