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Insurance rates for buyers in Europe, the Middle East and Africa with exposure to natural catastrophe or supply chain risks likely will continue to rise in 2012, Marsh Inc. said in an analysis released Wednesday.
While buyers with a good claims history and little exposure to natural catastrophes typically still are able to secure rate reductions for both property and liability coverage, substantial catastrophe losses and reduced investment income over the past year have prompted many insurers to seek rate increases at renewals on property business that have had a catastrophe loss, the brokerage said in the report.
“Insurers are scrutinizing renewals more closely than at any other time in the last decade,” Marsh Europe CEO Martin South said in a statement. “While rates are generally expected to remain stable across Europe for the first half of 2012, the future implementation of Solvency II and other market factors may increase pressure from insurers to increase rates.”
Traditional supply chain coverage, such as suppliers extension clauses—which is cover for interruption caused by damage at a supplier’s premises—have begun to be restricted after losses from the 2011 earthquake in Japan and floods in Thailand, according to the report. But an alternative market, offering additional business interruption coverage, such as nondamage cover, has been emerging, according to the report, “Navigating the Risk and Insurance Landscape: Europe, Middle East and Africa Insurance Market Report 2012.”
For professional and financial lines, rates have declined on average across the EMEA area for middle-market business, according to the report, while larger financial institutions have struggled to secure rate reductions amid fears about the sector’s exposure to the eurozone crisis, according to the report.
In addition, rates likely will rise for trade credit coverage this year. “Underwriters are becoming more cautious and are reviewing cover levels, especially in markets such as Greece and Italy,” Marsh said in the analysis.