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Commercial insurance prices in the U.S. inched upward in the fourth quarter of 2017, according to a pricing survey released Monday by Willis Towers Watson P.L.C.
Price changes reported by carriers still averaged less than 1% for the 10th consecutive quarter, following a moderating trend in price increases that began in the first quarter of 2013, the brokerage said in a statement.
The WTW Commercial Lines Insurance Pricing Survey fourth-quarter update compares prices on policies written during the fourth quarter of 2017 with those from the fourth quarter of 2016.
Workers compensation and directors and officers liability saw “material” price decreases in the fourth quarter, the statement said. Workers compensation saw larger price decreases than the prior quarter, in contrast to most other lines, the statement said.
Commercial property prices, which had been showing decreases for much of the recent past, now indicate increases in the low single digits, the statement said.
“Last year’s weather disasters were some of the most financially disruptive in history, and the survey results indicate we’re likely now seeing the initial response to the catastrophes on the pricing side of the property market,” Pierre Laurin, Willis Towers Watson’s Americas property/casualty sales and practice leader for insurance consulting and technology, said in the statement.
Florence Tondu-Melique, chief executive of the French unit of Zurich Insurance Group AG, said that insurance pricing between simpler and complex risks is increasingly widening across the world, StrategicRisk reported. Ms. Tondu-Melique said that the insurance industry has become adept at mitigating conventional risks, while new complex risks have emerged from the interconnectedness of today's globalized world.