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U.S. property/casualty composite rates post first rise since 2005: MarketScout


Commercial U.S. property/casualty insurance rates rose an average of 1% in November compared with the same period a year earlier, the first across-the-board increase in more than six years, according to MarketScout.

“After six years and eight months, the soft market cycle has finally broken,” Richard Kerr, CEO of the Dallas-based electronic insurance exchange, said in a statement. “November 2011 is the first composite rate increase since the soft market began in February 2005.”

No class of coverage registered a rate decrease, according to MarketScout. Rates for commercial property, business owner policies and workers compensation all experienced 2% increases, while business interruption, general liability, commercial automobile and employment practices liability insurance all increased by 1%. All other lines tracked by MarketScout remained flat.

Smaller accounts see greater increase

Among size of accounts, only the very largest reported a decrease, and that was a 1% drop. Generally speaking, the smaller the account size, the greater the increase, with the smallest accounts surveyed reporting a 2% increase.

The 1% average increase in rates came after two months of

MarketScout reporting flat rates. A month ago, Mr. Kerr said the two consecutive months of flat rates indicated that the market was on “the cusp of a composite rate increase.”