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March P/C rates dropped 12%: MarketScout

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DALLAS--Property/casualty insurance rates fell by 12% overall in March compared with rates a year earlier, electronic insurance exchange MarketScout reported Thursday.

All lines of coverage, industry sectors and sizes of accounts reported rate decreases, with larger accounts experiencing larger percentage drops than smaller accounts. General liability rates registered the largest drop--13%--with surety reporting the smallest drop at 3%.

Dallas-based MarketScout Chief Executive Officer Richard Kerr cited seven reasons for the market trends in a statement announcing last month's market conditions. They are:

  • Major insurance companies are reporting strong profits;

  • Many admitted carriers are now writing business which was previously written in the nonadmitted market;

  • There is an influx of new capacity via startup insurance companies;

  • Florida has passed legislation which will result in billions of dollars of new property capacity;

  • The stock market remains strong;

  • Corporate earnings are strong; and

  • There have been no major catastrophe losses in almost 18 months.